Man Sentenced for Throwing Bottles Into Roaring Fork River

Basalt—No one really knows why a Latino man tossed about three-dozen water bottles containing urine, household chemicals and pornograhpic photos into the Roaring Fork River.  Even without a clear explanation, Pitkin County District Judge Chris Sedlin sentenced 44-year-old Ricardo Parras Membreno to two years probation and 40 hours of community service for pleading guilty to felony criminal mischief.  The discarded bottles, wrapped in duct tape, caused quite a stir around the valley as people discovered them along the shores as the current carried them down the Roaring Fork.  There was fear the bottles may have contained syringes and other drug related items.  Basalt police arrested Membreno on March 16th after they witnessed him throwing the bottles into the river from a spot near the bridge at 7-11. Attempts by the El Salvador native to explain his unusual behavior ranged from cultural to religious to emotional.  Membreno explained through a translator he was still coping from his mother’s recent death.