April 21, 2019

Archives for June 26, 2013

W. Terry Ruckriegle to Take Helm as Colorado Bar’s Next President

CBAprez_headshots_Terry. Photo by Jamie CottenSenior judge and mediator W. Terry Ruckriegle will start his one-year term as president of the Colorado Bar Association on July 1, representing the association’s 18,515 members.

The former 5th Judicial District chief judge will focus his term on issues relating to young lawyers: the financial burden they assume, examining options to pay down or forgive their loan debt and ensuring those new to the profession have the skills necessary to enter the workplace prepared.

In addition, Ruckriegle will continue to support CBA programs that concentrate on mentoring, service to veterans and professionalism in the legal community, particularly among attorneys and judges.

“I’m looking forward to the opportunity to receive the leadership baton from Mark Fogg and continuing with a number of the valuable programs in the Colorado Bar Association,” Ruckriegle said.

Ruckriegle spent 26 years on the bench after he was appointed in 1984 by Gov. Dick Lamm. He handled a variety of high-profile cases, most notably the sexual assault case against L.A. Lakers shooting guard Kobe Bryant in 2003-04. Ruckriegle served as the 5th Judicial District’s chief judge from 1994 until his retirement in 2010. Prior to his appointment to the bench he worked as a prosecutor in the 5th Judicial District Attorney’s Office and in private practice.

Currently, Ruckriegle serves as a senior judge, hearing cases all around the state, and as a mediator, arbitrator and special master. He and his wife Debbie live in Breckenridge. They have three daughters: Stephanie, 29; Heidi, 26; and Sarah, 24.

Colorado Supreme Court: Colorado’s Premises Liability Statute Does Not Apply Solely to Matters Related to the Land

The Colorado Supreme Court issued its opinion in Larrieu v. Best Buy Stores, L.P. on Monday, June 24, 2013.

CAR 21.1 Certified Question—Colorado Premises Liability Statute—Landowner Liability for Activities Conducted or Circumstances Existing on Real Property.

The Supreme Court considered a reformulated certified question from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit: whether Colorado’s premises liability statute, CRS § 13-21-115, applies as a matter of law only to those activities and circumstances that are directly or inherently related to the land. The Supreme Court held that the statute is not, as a matter of law, restricted solely to activities and circumstances that are directly or inherently related to the land. That restriction does not appear in the statutory language, and the Court declined to adopt it now. Instead, the Court held that the premises liability statute applies to conditions, activities, and circumstances on the property that the landowner is liable for in its legal capacity as a landowner. This inquiry necessitates a fact-specific, case-by-case inquiry into whether (1) the plaintiff’s alleged injury occurred while on the landowner’s real property, and (2) the alleged injury occurred by reason of the property’s condition or as a result of activities conducted or circumstances existing on the property.

Summary and full case available here.

Colorado Supreme Court: Narrow Exception to Statute Voids Public Trustee’s Release of Deed of Trust

The Colorado Supreme Court issued its opinion in Shaw v. 17 West Mill St, LLC on Monday, June 24, 2013.

Real Property—Release of Deed of Trust—Fraudulent Request for Release of Deed of Trust—Recording Act—Bona Fide Purchaser.

Arguing that actual fraud is required under CRS § 38-39-102(8), Dennis Shaw and First Horizon Home Loan Corporation challenged the court of appeals’ ruling that “constructive fraud” is sufficient to void a request for a release of a deed of trust. The Supreme Court reversed, concluding that the statute creates a narrow exception that voids the public trustee’s release of a deed of trust only when proof of actual fraud is demonstrated by a preponderance of the evidence.

Summary and full case available here.

Colorado Supreme Court: Trial Court Must Become Involved in Discovery Process if Party Claims Information Not Relevant to Claim or Defense

The Colorado Supreme Court issued its opinion in In re DCP Midstream LP v. Anadarko Petroleum Corp. on Monday, June 24, 2013.

CRCP 26(b)—Attorney–Client Privilege.

The Supreme Court held that CRCP 26(b) requires trial courts to take an active role managing discovery when a scope objection is raised. The trial court must determine the appropriate scope of discovery in light of the reasonable needs of the case and tailor discovery to those needs. To resolve a dispute regarding the proper scope of discovery, the trial court should, at a minimum, consider the cost–benefit and proportionality factors set forth in CRCP 26(b)(2)(F). The Court also held that title opinions, like any document sought in discovery, may contain privileged attorney–client communications if the parameters of that doctrine are met.

Summary and full case available here.

Tenth Circuit: Dismissal of Complaint Against Federal Election Commission Affirmed

The Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals published its opinion in Free Speech v. Federal Election Commission on Tuesday, June 25, 2013.

Plaintiff-Appellant, Free Speech, appealed the district court’s dismissal of the complaint it filed in July 2012, alleging certain regulations and practices of Defendant-Appellee, the Federal Election Commission (“FEC”), violated its rights under the First Amendment.

The Tenth Circuit found that the district court comprehensively analyzed and correctly resolved Free Speech’s constitutional challenges to certain of the FEC’s definitions, standards, and policies. It therefore adopted the district court’s analysis as its opinion and ordered the district court’s memorandum decision and order granting the FEC’s Motion to Dismiss to be published.

Tenth Circuit: Certificate of Appealability Denied Where Defendant Waived Right to Appeal or Make Collateral Attack

The Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals published its opinion in United States v. Parker on Tuesday, June 25, 2013.

Despite a plea agreement containing a waiver of his right to appeal or collaterally attack his conviction or sentence, Donte Lamonte Parker filed a § 2255 motion to vacate, set aside or correct sentence, which was denied. Parker, proceeding pro se, wants to appeal from the denial of his § 2255 motion. His request for a certificate of appealability (COA) was also denied by the district judge, prompting him to reapply for a COA in the Tenth Circuit.

Parker alleged ineffective assistance of counsel because of an alleged failure to file a requested appeal. The court agreed with the trial court’s analysis and concluded that Parker’s collateral attack waiver was enforceable.

The court also found no merit in Parker’s claim of ineffective assistance in negotiating his plea. The court denied a COA and dismissed the matter.

Tenth Circuit: Unpublished Opinions, 6/25/13

On Tuesday, June 25, 2013, the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals issued two published opinions and three unpublished opinions.

United States v. Garst

United States v. Robinson

Lewis v. Thaler

No case summaries are provided for unpublished opinions. However, published opinions are summarized and provided by Legal Connection.