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Man sentenced for dumping chemical-filled bottles in river

Man sentenced for dumping chemical-filled bottles in river
Posted at 1:08 PM, Jul 03, 2018
and last updated 2018-07-03 15:10:31-04

ASPEN, Colo. — A western Colorado man has been sentenced to two years of supervised probation and 40 hours of community service for throwing dozens of sealed bottles containing bleach and other common household chemicals into the Roaring Fork River.

Ricardo Maestrino Parras Membreno, 43, said during his sentencing hearing on Monday that his actions stemmed from his tough upbringing in El Salvador and the death of his mother two years ago. He did not provide further explanation.

Membreno pleaded guilty to a single count of felony criminal mischief last month.

Deputy District Attorney Tony Hershey said a large number of agencies worked on the case since it was "initially a cause of great concern."

Authorities have determined that the bottles were not linked to any kind of drug operation.

Membreno was arrested March 16 after police said they saw him placing bottles in the Roaring Fork River in Basalt. Basalt police suspected the bottles contained ingredients used to make methamphetamine, but Chief Gregg Knott a search of Membreno's home had no evidence of drugs.