School board prez pleads ‘not guilty’ to providing alcohol to minors
Sky-Hi Daily News
The president of the East Grand Board of Education is pleading “not guilty” to charges of supplying alcohol to minors.
Standing before Judge Ben McClelland in Monday’s session of the Grand County Court, Mark Bujanovich of Granby entered the “not guilty” plea. The plea was submitted on his behalf by his defense attorney Jack DiCola.
Judge McClelland set a three-day trial for March 19 – 21. He also set a pretrial conference between himself, DiCola and Deputy District Attorney Robert Toole for Feb. 4.
Prior to setting the trial date, Toole told the judge that he believed a maximum of two days would be needed for the trial. However, DiCola objected, saying that three days were essential because the defense planned to present 20 witnesses on Bujanovich’s behalf.
On Aug. 6, Bujanovich was charged with six counts of criminal violation of Colorado Revised Statute 12-47-901 (1)(a.5) ” providing alcohol to a minor. The violation is a Class One misdemeanor.
The charges stem from the Sheriff’s Department investigation of an alleged alcohol party that took place June 2, 2007. The party was reportedly for graduating seniors of Middle Park High School in Granby.
The Sheriff’s Department investigation took place during most of June and early July. The findings of that investigation and the Sheriff’s recommendations were sent in mid-July to the District Attorney’s office, which issued the formal charges.
From a number of sources, it has been learned the June 2 incident occurred at the Vagabond Ranch. More than 40 graduating seniors of Middle Park High were reportedly present at the party.
The party and the alleged consumption of alcohol by underage participants became known to authorities after one of the teenagers had to be taken to the Granby Medical Center. The teen had broken his ankle after reportedly doing a backflip off a picnic table.
The presumptive penalties on each of the counts is a minimum sentence of six months imprisonment or a $500 fine, or both; the maximum sentence is 18 months imprisonment, or a $5,000 fine, or both.
Bujanovich has been the president of the East Grand Board of Education for almost four years. He is also a trustee on the Granby Town Board and the manager of Vagabond Ranch located on State Highway 125.
Since the presentation of the charges, Bujanovich has continued to hold his positions on both the school and town boards. Both boards have stood by Bujanovich, maintaining that he is “innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.”
” To reach Will Bublitz, call 887-3334, ext. 19602, or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
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