Here is a horrendous case of carbon monoxide poisoning: A family from Denver wins a holiday stay in Aspen in a charity auction, and all four family members die on Thanksgiving 2008 from the lethal fumes at the vacation home.

Parker Lofgren, 39, his wife Caroline, 42, and their children Sophie, 8, and Owen, 10, died in the horrible incident, which has lead to criminal charges as well as a civil lawsuit.  
The Aspen City Council is apparently prepared to approve $50,000 being put in a fund for the defense of  the two building inspectors charged in the deaths, the Aspen Daily News reported Monday.

Retired Aspen building inspector Erik Peltonen is charged with four counts of criminal negligence for the death of the Lofgren family, while plans examiner Brian Pawl stands charged with four counts of misdemeanor reckless endangerment.
A broken pipe that was part of the home’s snowmelt system allegedly lead to the carbon monoxide fatalities, and Peltonen and Pawl had overseen the  home’s inspection and permitting. 
Martin Brown, owner of Roaring Fork Plumbing and Heating, which allegedly installed the system, is also charged in the case. 
In addition to the Aspen council, Pitkin County is also putting up matching funds for the defense of the two city employees, according to the Aspen Daily News.  
Peltonen and Pawl, indicted this summer, haven’t entered a plea on the charges yet. They are also named as defendants in a civil suit filed by the Lofgrens’ family. 
Pawl and Peltonen’s defense in the civil suit will be covered by the city’s insurance carrier.
The lawsuit also lists s defendants the vacation home’s owner and developer, Black Diamond Development, and the  manufacturer of the snowmelt system, along with and other parties that were not charged criminally.
The deaths of the four Lofgren family members sparked new laws being passed in Colorado and some other states that mandate carbon monoxide detectors be installed in all homes.
Although county codes at the time of the tragedy required carbon monoxide detectors in new homes, the house where the Lofgrens were staying allegedly didn’t have one, the Aspen paper reported. 


3 replies
  1. steve vole
    steve vole says:

    We sell an alarm that when carbon monoxide builds up in the garage it will open the door. They can be purchased on Ebay for $99.00 just type in second chance alarms or email us at


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