DA files vehicular homicide charge

20-year-old charged in death of prosecutor

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Logan Robert Arambel

The 14th Judicial District Attorney's Office alleges a 20-year-old man's reckless driving in December 2008 caused the death of a longtime Wyoming federal prosecutor.

Logan Robert Arambel, of Holly, was charged late Friday afternoon in Moffat County with vehicular homicide, a Class 4 felony. The charge is in connection with a Dec. 26, 2008, accident on Colorado Highway 13 in northern Moffat County, between Craig and Baggs, Wyo.

Arambel, according to the charging document, "drove a motor vehicle in a reckless manner, and the conduct was the proximate cause of the death of John Barksdale."

Barksdale, 62, was a chief lawyer on criminal cases in the U.S. Attorney's Office since 1992.

According to a Colorado State Patrol arrest affidavit, Arambel's white 1995 Ford F-350 was heading south on Highway 13, and Barksdale's white 2000 Ford Taurus was heading north.

Arambel was driving behind two semitrailers, and he attempted to pass the first in snowy conditions with limited visibility, according to the affidavit. His truck struck Barksdale's car head on, the State Patrol reported.

Barksdale was found unresponsive at the scene, the State Patrol reported, and he was transported to The Memorial Hospital in Craig and then airlifted to St. Mary's Hospital in Grand Junction.

He suffered severe head trauma, several broken bones and never regained consciousness after the collision, according to the affidavit. He died Dec. 28 from injuries sustained in the collision, the State Patrol reported.

The arrest affidavit summed up the investigation's findings.

Arambel, the State Patrol reported, "drove his vehicle in a reckless manner by knowingly attempting to pass two southbound 18-wheeled semi-truck and trailers when there was little to no vision of roadway width, grade or vehicles approaching from the opposite direction."

His conduct of "taking a substantial and unjustified risk" of passing the vehicles resulted in "Arambel colliding head on with a vehicle driven northbound by John R. Barksdale," the State Patrol concluded.

A warrant was issued for Arambel's arrest, and he reported Friday to the Moffat County Jail, where he was booked into custody. He was released later that day on a $25,000 personal recognizance bond.

According to paperwork his attorney, Larry Combs, of Steamboat Springs, filed with the court, Arambel has never been arrested for a felony before, was a student at Lamar Community College and served as a volunteer with the Lamar Volunteer Fire Department.

A condition of his release from custody, according to court records, was that he not operate a motor vehicle while the case against him is pending.

Joshua Roberts can be reached at 875-1791, or jroberts@craigdailypress.com.

Comments

gobroncos 5 years, 10 months ago

Hmmm...interesting that the DA can press homicide charges in a vehicle causing death. Ms. Roesink certainly didn't do this when my brother was killed by a meth drive. Guess it is who you are not what the law really is. Absolutely unreal. Maybe Bonnie's predecessor can do better.

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50cal 5 years, 10 months ago

Cathy, look at the name if they prosecute him the money will stay in moffat county. sad to say but the meth head that killed your brother would have gone to doc and the money would have too.

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oldsage 5 years, 10 months ago

That's right 50, and not only that, it was who got dead as a result. If the guy had been John Q. Citizen who died, it would have been a plea bargain to obstructed windows! A totally different standard is in place for the "little people", it's called the JUST-US-System of the 14th!

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gobroncos 5 years, 10 months ago

Unfortunately our district voted her in...Miss Stewart was aware of the injustices and the cover ups in our DA's office. She was our only hope of rectifying some of the corruption within. Tom uncovered a lot of dirt but the news media will always protect the office as well. So as you said, we are screwed.

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50cal 5 years, 10 months ago

I voted for her and i usually don't vote democrat. but the corrupt system that it is I thought it was time for some new blood.

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oldsage 5 years, 10 months ago

What news media? You are not referring to the never report a thing on corruption and when the citizens do it like in this forum the forums are suspended until after the elections? Yea, I think we all know who you are talking about.

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freeman 5 years, 10 months ago

I STILL THINK THEY SHOULD DO IT LIKE COURTS IN OTHER COUNTRIES ,,IF THEY ARE GUILTY ,,TAKE EM OUT BACK AND QUIT WAISTING THE TAX PAYERS MONEY,,,,,

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woodsinsd 5 years, 10 months ago

Honestly....this kid made a big mistake, who hasn't driven recklessly when they're 20-something????...he made the choice to come back to face his consequences...and yet we have headlines in the paper of drug dealers getting off for "technicalities"???? Because they're illegal? Because why? Haven't been home for a long time, but I'm thinking there's something seriously wrong when they can bust a whole drug ring, and more than 1/2 get off, but this kid gets nailed. He's going to get fried....for honesty. Haven't been in the ol' home town for quite some time, and I am starting to think I'm glad I haven't been!

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jitterbug 5 years, 10 months ago

He's just charged people. You don't know how this case will go, and knowing our DA's office it will probably be pled down too. Seems to me they're prosecuting him the same as everyone else, which means they will try and do it the cheapest way possible, which is a plea bargain and not a trial. You all are being naive. You think the real world operates like your John Grisham book but it doesn't.

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JDR4 5 years, 10 months ago

lol, like courts, courts in other countries you say?... out back? hahaha.
Good one. Thats a good solution. Take everyone out back and shoot em. Bury em all together like the scum they are. I seem to remember a few periods in our history where its been done... Nice to know people still agree with this way of thinking. ;) lol. jk. i hope you are too.

All the posts are correct here. Its some bullarcky (****) that his DA is charging him with Veh Homicide and the Bailey killer wasnt, especially seeing how the two cases can be separated by the details. Drugged Driving vs. Horrible Weather Mistake. I wander which one wins out in the public opinion as the least of our concerns.

More Proof of our justice system at its best. And more proof that individuals, not the whole make and enforce laws. Unfortunately.

Is it just me or is the paper all about crime in NW Colorado now? Crime Crusaders they have become.

And yes you all are correct in thinking the media, both the Radio and Paper, wont dig for any story past a certain point because it might upset advertising, and/or tick off the people who could give you news stories and information in the future. Burnt bridges and such, blah blah. Makes sense. Too bad those in charge just cant do whats right in the first place. I know multiple times where a reporter was shut down by management for looking into corruption, and imbalanced drug arrests, money wasted by ACET, etc. Its just a fact of local, small communities. I also had the truck door of our police Chief Walt Vanetta closed on me after a city council meeting while trying to ask him questions about where money for certain programs were spent and why, then told not to continue my questioning towards him at anytime.

Good times.

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