Mark Redwine is charged with second-degree murder and child abuse resulting in death for the 2012 disappearance of his 13-year-old son Dylan Redwine.
DURANGO, Colo. — After years of delays, a jury will soon have the case in the trial of a father accused of killing his teenage son in November 2012.
Closing arguments in the Mark Redwine trial are expected Thursday. The prosecution and defense have called dozens of witnesses, ranging from search and rescue personnel who first searched for missing 13-year-old Dylan Redwine to the couple who found his skull while hiking on Middle Mountain in November 2015.
The boy’s father, Mark Redwine, has pleaded not guilty to second-degree murder and child abuse resulting in death. He was indicted in 2017 – nearly five years after his son was last seen on Nov. 18, 2012, and four years after the boy’s partial remains were first discovered off a mountain road a few miles from Mark Redwine’s property in Vallecito.
Mark Redwine told the judge Wednesday that he will not testify in the trial.
Here’s a recap of what more than 50 witnesses have said and evidence that the jury has heard so far.
>>> 9NEWS has provided daily digital coverage of the Mark Redwine trial. For all of our updates, head to 9news.com/dylanredwine.
Prosecutors claim that Mark Redwine killed his son after the boy confronted him about lewd photos he had found of his father, something that fractured their relationship.
Their case began with testimony from Dylan Redwine’s friends, who exchanged text messages with him on the night he was last seen alive.
Dylan Redwine had been in Vallecito — which is northeast of Durango — for a court-ordered visit with Mark Redwine. The last images of Dylan Redwine while he was alive came from Walmart surveillance footage.
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Phone evidence shows that he had exchanged text messages with his friends on his phone and iPod until roughly 9:30 p.m. that night, and then he went silent. He had made plans to meet a friend early the morning of Nov. 19, 2012, but never arrived.
Dylan Redwine’s phone and iPod have not been recovered. His backpack is also still missing, according to investigators.
Mark Redwine reported his son missing on the afternoon of Nov. 19, after he returned home from work and took a nap. He sent his son four text messages that day and called multiple times, but there was no answer.
RELATED: Witness describes the 4 text messages Dylan Redwine’s father sent him the day he was reported missing
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A member of the search and rescue team that came to Mark Redwine’s house the night Dylan Redwine was reported missing said that they searched a creek nearby because the boy liked to fish, and they became increasingly worried as it got dark and cold. Dylan Redwine did not have a jacket with him, according to the testimony.
Mark Redwine shut off his lights at 11 p.m. the night after his son’s disappearance, Upper Pine River Deputy Fire Chief Roy Vreeland testified.
“Most people tend to turn every light on and make their house a beacon so that a missing person could find their way home whether it’s a spouse or a child,” Vreeland said. “… it was odd. Very odd.”
A DNA expert testified that blood had been found in Mark Redwine’s living room, and that at least one sample could have belonged to Dylan Redwine. It’s unclear how the blood got there.
RELATED: DNA expert: Dylan Redwine’s blood was found in his father’s living room
Dylan Redwine’s partial remains were found by a search team in June 2013 not far from Middle Mountain Road. This is up the road from Mark Redwine’s house. Crews also found torn-up remnants of the boy’s shirt, a sneaker and a sock.
A couple found Dylan Redwine’s skull in a rugged area about five miles up that same road in November 2015. An expert on animal behavior said bears were likely in hibernation during November 2012, and it’s unlikely the skull would have been carried so far from the rest of the body by an animal.
RELATED: A look at what investigators found on a rugged mountainside in their search for Dylan Redwine
Dylan Redwine’s death was ultimately ruled a homicide.
Another expert testified that there was evidence of a skull fracture at the time of Dylan Redwine’s death and that there was also possible sharp force trauma on the cranium.
RELATED: Dylan Redwine suffered skull fracture, sharp force injury around time of death, expert testifies
Carren Gummin, a K9 handler, testified about how her trained dog Molly signaled the possible presence of human remains in Mark Redwine’s house. She said the dog also gave what’s known as a “trained final response” near his truck and on clothes that belonged to Mark Redwine.
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The last witness to testify for the prosecution was FBI Agent John Grusing. He said that the day Dylan Redwine was reported missing, Mark Redwine took a 45-minute nap despite not having heard from or seen his son for hours.
Grusing testified it was during this third interview that Mark Redwine mentioned possible injuries to Dylan. At first, he told Grusing, Dylan had a cold sore on his lip that was “oozing blood,” but when Grusing told Mark Redwine he could easily verify with Dylan’s mother whether he had a cold sore, he changed his story.
Mark Redwine then told Grusing Dylan had been injured while they were tossing a football at his house. He said that Dylan had been hit in the face and that his lip began bleeding and dripped blood onto the floor.
RELATED: Unable to locate his son, Mark Redwine took a nap, FBI agent says
Grusing said this was inconsistent with a previous assertion from Mark Redwine that his son had not been hurt, and talked about other inconsistencies with his story.
This included Mark Redwine saying there was a “less than 5% chance” his son ran away. Grusing also said he mentioned the possibility of an animal attack, specifically the bears in the area.
Mark Redwine’s defense team attempted to rebut many of the arguments made by prosecution experts.
One such witness Dr. Bruce Anderson, said it wasn’t clear when Dylan Redwine’s skull fracture occurred, and it’s possible it could have been two to three weeks after his death.
He also said it’s unclear if the skull fracture played a role in how the 13-year-old died.
RELATED: Dylan Redwine’s skull fracture could have occurred weeks after death, defense expert testifies
During his testimony, Anderson also said that in his experience the skull is found with the rest of the body about as often as it is found somewhere else.
“The longer a body lays out in the wilderness, the more likely critters will get to it and it’s more likely that different bones will be separated from one another,” Anderson said. “The longer a body is out there, the more likely it is the skull won’t be found with the other remains.”
Karen Alexander, who dated Mark Redwine, testified that she didn’t think he killed his son, and that she had seen Dylan Redwine bleed in his living room when she visited in 2011.
“He loved Dylan very much, talked about him all the time,” Alexander said.
RELATED: Woman testifies she saw Dylan Redwine bleed on his father’s living room floor
Richard Eikelenboom, a forensic expert, said that the evidence in Mark Redwine’s living room doesn’t indicate to him that there was a violent incident in the area.
He also agreed on cross examination that there are blunt force injuries that could result in death that might bleed very little or not all.
“There is very little blood. There can be all kinds of violence and some of the violence you don’t have very much blood,” Eikelenboom said.
RELATED: Blood evidence doesn’t support violent incident inside Redwine home, defense expert says
> Click here to see all the evidence from the prosecution.
> Click here to see all the evidence from the defense.
(Editor’s note: Some of the items admitted into evidence could be disturbing to some viewers)
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