July 17, 2019

Colorado Court of Appeals: No Violation of Defendant’s Speedy Trial Rights When UMDDA Request Improperly Filed and Counsel Requested Continuances

The Colorado Court of Appeals issued its opinion in People v. Roberts III on Thursday, April 11, 2013.

Uniform Mandatory Disposition of Detainers Act—Speedy Trial.

Defendant appealed the judgments of conviction entered on jury verdicts finding him guilty of violating the Colorado Organized Crime Control Act (COCCA); conspiracy to commit computer crime (two counts); conspiracy to commit theft; conspiracy to commit forgery; computer crime (two counts); theft (four counts); forgery (seventeen counts); and possession of a forged instrument (two counts). The judgments were affirmed.

Defendant contended that his convictions must be vacated because he was not brought to trial within the period allowed by the applicable version of the Uniform Mandatory Disposition of Detainers Act (UMDDA). However, defendant improperly filed his UMDDA request while represented by counsel and improperly served this request. The court and prosecutor did not receive notice of defendant’s UMDDA request until November 10, 2005. Consequently, defendant’s 180-day UMDDA period commenced that day.

Although defendant did not waive his UMDDA rights, the time for bringing defendant to trial was properly extended beyond the May 9, 2006 date as a result of two continuances requested by his attorneys. These continuances, which did not require the personal consent of defendant, were necessary to protect defendant’s constitutional right to effective assistance of counsel, and the length of the continuances were proper, as well. Therefore, there was no violation of defendant’s UMDDA or speedy trial rights.

Summary and full case available here.

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