Wiretap—Authorization—CRS § 16-15-102.
Defendant Thomas Lynn O’Hara III appealed the judgment of conviction entered on a jury verdict finding him guilty of distribution of a schedule II controlled substance. The case was remanded for further findings.
Task force officers, in conjunction with the local district attorney’s office, applied for and received orders authorizing wiretaps on two phones belonging to R.P., a suspected drug dealer. Evidence gathered from these wiretaps implicated defendant as R.P.’s supplier of methamphetamine.
Defendant argued that the application for the wiretap was fatally defective because the applicant was a Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) task force officer, not the elected district attorney. CRS § 16-15-102 requires that the attorney general or a district attorney authorize a specific wiretap application; however, the elected official need not sign or personally submit the application. Here, the wiretap application submitted to the issuing judge was prepared by a DEA agent and a deputy district attorney. Neither the district attorney nor the deputy district attorney testified at the suppression hearing, and there was no finding by the trial court that the district attorney specifically authorized the wiretap application. Therefore, the case was remanded for further proceedings to determine whether the elected district attorney authorized the wiretap application. If the trial court determines that the wiretap and its extensions were authorized by the elected district attorney, the judgment of conviction must be affirmed. However, if the trial court determines that the elected district attorney did not authorize the wiretap or extensions, the conviction must be reversed.
About CBA-CLE Legal Connection
CBA CLE Legal Connection is published by Colorado Bar Association CLE (also known as CLE in Colorado, Inc.). It is focused on delivering timely resources, updates and continuing legal education to … [Read More...]
Featured Homestudy: Business Law Institute
Law Practice Tip of the Week
Solo Tip Tuesday: Keep Track of Requests You've Made of Others in a Folder Called @WFF
This could be my all-time favorite tip. We often use email to ask someone to send us something, or check on something and get back to us, etc. Sending the email is the easy part. The hard part is keeping track of what you asked for and when, and then remembering to follow up when the person doesn’t get back to you. Click here to read more.
On Friday, May 29, 2015, the Colorado State Judicial Branch announced Governor Hickenlooper’s appointment of Elizabeth L. Harris to the Colorado Court of Appeals. Ms. Harris will fill a vacancy created by the retirement of Hon. James S. Casebolt, effective July 1, 2015.
Bills Regarding Military Employment Services, Voting Rights, Disabled Veteran License Plates, and More Signed
On Wednesday, May 27, 2015, Governor Hickenlooper signed six bills into law. To date, the governor has signed 258 bills into law. The bills signed Wednesday are summarized here.
On Thursday, May 28, 2015, Governor Hickenlooper appointed Lynnette Wenner to the district court bench in the Eleventh Judicial District. Ms. Wenner will fill a vacancy created by the retirement of Hon. Charles Barton, effective July 1, 2015.