Elaine Hall (pictured) testified on Wednesday at her ex-husband Mark Redwine’s trial for the murder of their son Dylan
The mother of a 13-year-old boy allegedly killed by his father revealed how she became suspicious of her ex-husband just hours after their son vanished during testimony at his murder trial.
Mark Redwine’s trial for the murder of his son Dylan kicked off in Colorado’s La Plata County court this week – nearly nine years after the boy disappeared in November 2012 in the Vallecito area near Durango.
Prosecutors say Redwine, 59, killed Dylan in a fit of rage after the boy confronted him about disturbing photos he’d found of his father eating feces from a diaper and dressed in women’s lingerie.
On Wednesday, the court heard from several of Dylan’s family members, including his mother, Elaine Hall.
Hall recounted how she sent Dylan to stay with his father for Thanksgiving on November 18, 2012, and learned the next day that he was missing.
In text messages shown to the court, Redwine wrote to Hall at 4.32pm on November 19: ‘Elaine, I am wondering if you have heard from Dylan, I have been trying to reach him all afternoon.’
Hall said she immediately set out on a six-hour drive to La Plata County as she began to fear that Redwine had something to do with Dylan’s disappearance.
At 6.35pm she texted Redwine: ‘He wouldn’t just leave. He would have called me. I am so suspect of you right now. How could he just disappear?’
Redwine, 59, (left) is currently standing trial for the murder of his 13-year-old son Dylan (right), who disappeared near their home in Colorado’s La Plata County in November 2012
Redwine told Hall that he had just left the Marshall’s office to report Dylan missing – but she testified that when she called the office she was told that there was no record or report about her son, according to the Denver Post.
‘They didn’t have a report or anything on Dylan being missing. They really didn’t know anything,’ Hall said.
Hall said that Dylan didn’t want to go to his father’s for the holiday and instead wanted to stay with his mom and maternal grandmother, who was stricken with cancer.
Seven months after Dylan (pictured) disappeared his remains were found scattered in southwestern Colorado mountains by wild animals
When Hall consulted her attorney, however, she was left with little option.
‘She basically said it was a court order and that I would be in violation of the court,’ Hall testified about potentially withholding Dylan, according to 9News.
Describing the last time she saw Dylan at the Colorado Springs Airport, Hall told the court: ‘I said: “Oh, you’re too old to give your mom a hug,” and then he came back and gave me a hug.’
Under cross examination Redwine’s public defender questioned whether Hall’s suspicions of her ex-husband may have been unfairly fueled by their bitter divorce and custody battle.
‘I believed then that he was the last person to see Dylan and he had no answers for us and he was refusing to answer any questions or help us find Dylan and it was frustrating,’ Hall replied.
She later added, ‘I’ve always said, that I believed he had a hand in Dylan’s disappearance.’
Defending her actions in the days after Dylan was last seen – including her decision to speak to media about her suspicions – Hall said: ‘I was frantic. It was so surreal.
‘You don’t expect any of this to happen you and, you know, I figured he was safe because he was with his dad. And I was devastated that no one knew where my son was.
‘My intention was to bring Dylan home. It wasn’t to belittle or besmirch or anything like that it was to get Dylan’s face out there in case anyone in this country had seen him.’
Seven months after Dylan disappeared his remains were found scattered in southwestern Colorado mountains by wild animals.
His skull was found by hikers in 2015 about a mile from the initial location.
According to indictment, forensic anthropologists discovered the skull had injuries consistent with blunt force trauma at two locations.
Redwine, who has pleaded not guilty, was arrested after a grand jury indicted him in July 2017 on charges of second-degree murder and child abuse resulting in death.
If found guilty of his son’s death, Redwine faces up to 48 years in prison.
Redwine’s trial has been postponed at least 10 times with a judge granting multiple mistrials last year due to COVID-19 restrictions.
Dylan’s skull was found by hikers in 2015 about a mile from the initial location. According to indictment, forensic anthropologists discovered the skull had injuries consistent with blunt force trauma at two locations
Mark Redwine’s trial was postponed at least 10 times with a judge granting multiple mistrials last year due to COVID-19 restrictions. He is pictured in court in August 2017
On Wednesday the court also heard from Dylan’s older brother, Cory, who said the boy’s relationship with his father was deeply damaged when he discovered the alleged fetish photos.
‘Dylan lost any reason for him to look up to Mark that day,’ Cory said.
Cory, who is around eight years older than Dylan, was on the 2011 road trip to Cleveland where the photos were discovered. They looked at them together in a locked bathroom, with Cory taking pictures of the photos on his own phone.
‘He was pretty disgusted,’ Cory said of how Dylan reacted to the photos.
An August 2012 text exchange revealed that Dylan tried to use the photos as leverage against his dad during an argument.
‘Hey send me those poop pics of Papa because he gave me a speech about you guys being a bad example and I want to show him who he really is,’ Dylan texted Cory.
Cory said that he did not send the photos. His testimony is set to continue on Thursday.
In her testimony, Hall stated that she didn’t know if Dylan confronted his father over the scandalous photos.
Cory Redwine, Dylan’s older brother (pictured) revealed they had discovered the photos
If found guilty of his son’s death, Redwine faces up to 48 years in prison. The trial is expected to continue through mid-to-late July
During the prosecution’s opening statement on Monday, Special Deputy District Attorney Fred Johnson suggested Dylan confronted his father with ‘compromising photographs’ of Redwine dressed in women’s underwear and eating feces from a diaper on the night he was killed, according to The Denver Post.
‘A damaged relationship, exposed with compromising photographs, photographs in the hands of a 13-year-old who is disgusted by it, which triggered a violent rage in the defendant,’ Johnson said.
Johnson added that the prosecution plans to prove Dylan knew about the photographs and that they made him uncomfortable to be around his father.
Redwine’s public defender, Moran, dismissed that motive, highlighting old text messages which show Dylan had previously confronted his father about the photographs during a cross-country trip without suffering any harm.
Moran states the prosecution won’t be able to prove a connection between Dylan’s death and the photographs because they ‘come from deep within Mark’s private life.’
Prosecutors have argued that Dylan was killed around the night of November 18, 2012.
He had made plans to meet a friend the following morning but never showed up, and there was no activity on his cellphone after 9.56pm the night before.
Redwine initially told investigators he left Dylan alone that night to run errands and returned to find him missing.
A missing poster of 13-year-old Dylan Redwine hangs on a trail head sign next to Vallecito Reservoir in Vallecito, Colorado. His remains were found seven months later scattered in southwestern Colorado mountains by wild animals
During his opening statement for the defense, Moran said Dylan ran away from home and suggested that a bear or mountain lion attacked him due to a tooth mark found on Dylan’s skull.
Johnson said investigators found traces of Dylan’s blood in Redwine’s living room and a cadaver-sniffing dog alerted them to the smell of human remains in the back of Redwine’s truck and on his clothing.
He mentioned prosecutors will present evidence that Redwine killed Dylan in his living room, before dumping the body off a trail close to his house, and misleading investigators to cover up the crime.
Moran referred to the dog’s scent as ‘junk science,’ arguing that the ‘infinitesimally small’ amount of blood found in Redwine’s living room is likely to be found in anyone’s house.
However, prosecutors said Dylan’s body was discovered without his wallet or his backpack, a detail Moran said does not point to a scenario in which Dylan ran away.
During the first night when rescue crews were deployed to search for Dylan, all the lights in Redwine’s house were out by 11pm, Johnson said.
‘At a time when most people would have been out in the woods with a flashlight, a time when most people would know to leave the light on in case a child was lost in the woods … At 11pm, the defendant´s house went dark,’ Johnson said. ‘Dylan was gone.’
The case drew nation attention when Redwine and the boy’s mother, Elaine Hall, leveled accusations at each other during appearances on Dr. Phil in 2013.
In addition, TV host Nancy Grace also did a segment on Dylan’s disappearance.
Testimony began on Tuesday and is expected to continue through mid-to-late July.