Charges dismissed against El Paso County GOP chairman in crash that killed flower shop owner

UPDATE (4/19/17): The District Attorney’s Office has concluded that charges are not appropriate in this case and all charges previously filed against Trevor Dierdorff will be dismissed.

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — The chairman of the El Paso County Republican Party is now facing misdemeanor charges in connection with a crash that killed a flower shop owner in downtown Colorado Springs last month.

Mel Tolbert / Courtesy The Springs Funeral Services
Mel Tolbert / Courtesy The Springs Funeral Services

The crash happened around 7:30 a.m. March 28 near the intersection of Tejon Street and Platte Avenue. Police said the victim, 79-year-old Mel Tolbert, was crossing Tejon Street in the middle of the block when he was hit by a car that was backing up to park. Tolbert was taken to the hospital, where he later died.

Tolbert was the owner of Platte Floral, just east of downtown.

Police said the driver of the car, 45-year-old Trevor Dierdorff, was charged Wednesday in connection with the crash. He is charged with careless driving causing death, which is a class one misdemeanor, and drivers to exercise due care, which is a traffic infraction.

Dierdorff was elected chairman of the El Paso County Republicans in February, according to the group’s website.

Tolbert was the seventh traffic-related fatality Colorado Springs this year. Since then, there have been three more traffic-related fatalities, bringing the total for the year to 10. At this time last year, there were seven traffic-related fatalities.

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