March 26, 2019

Archives for March 25, 2015

Hon. Herbert L. Stern, III, to Retire from Second Judicial District Court

On Monday, March 23, 2015, the Colorado State Judicial Branch announced the retirement of Hon. Herbert L. Stern, III, from the Denver District Court, effective June 1, 2015. Judge Stern was appointed to the Denver District Court in June 1990, and primarily presides over civil cases involving money damages. Prior to his appointment to the bench, Judge Stern was a public defender for over 10 years and maintained a private law practice. He received his law degree from the University of Denver and his undergraduate degree from the University of California at Berkeley.

Applications are now being accepted for the forthcoming vacancy on the Denver District Court. Application forms are available from the State Judicial website and also from the ex officio chair of the Second Judicial District Nominating Commission, Justice Nathan Coats. Eligible applicants must be qualified electors of the Second Judicial District and must have been admitted to practice law in Colorado for five years. Applications must be received no later than 4 p.m. on April 21, 2015. Anyone wishing to nominate another for the vacancy must do so in writing no later than 4 p.m. on April 14, 2015.

For more information about the vacancy, click here.

Colorado Supreme Court: Natural Condition of Unimproved Property Caused Injuries so CGIA Applies

The Colorado Supreme Court issued its opinion in Burnett v. State of Colorado Department of Natural Resources on Monday, March 23, 2015.

Colorado Governmental Immunity Act—Statutory Interpretation.

In this appeal, the Supreme Court considered whether the government retained immunity when a tree branch fell on plaintiff in a designated campsite at a state park. The court of appeals held that under the Colorado Governmental Immunity Act, the fallen branch was a “natural condition of . . . unimproved property,” and thus the government was immune from suit. The Court agreed. Under CRS § 24-10-106(1)(e), a “natural condition of . . . unimproved property” includes native trees that originate on unimproved property. Because a branch from such a tree caused plaintiff’s injuries here, the natural condition provision immunized the government.

Summary and full case available here, courtesy of The Colorado Lawyer.

Colorado Supreme Court: Totality of Circumstances Illustrates Miranda Waiver Knowing and Intelligent

The Colorado Supreme Court issued its opinion in People v. Thames on Monday, March 23, 2015.

Suppression Order—Knowing and Intelligent Waiver of Miranda rights—Totality of the Circumstances.

This interlocutory appeal challenged the trial court’s order suppressing statements defendant made during custodial interrogation. Investigators gave defendant an oral Miranda advisement during the interrogation. Defendant confirmed that he understood his Miranda rights and signed a written waiver form before making certain statements that the prosecution wanted to use in its case-in-chief. The trial court concluded that defendant did not knowingly and intelligently waive his Miranda rights after a speech language pathologist and audiologist testified that defendant had trouble understanding spoken paragraphs regarding abstract concepts. Under the totality of the circumstances, the Supreme Court reversed the trial court’s suppression order, holding that defendant knowingly and intelligently waived his Miranda rights.

Summary and full case available here, courtesy of The Colorado Lawyer.

Tenth Circuit: Unpublished Opinions, 3/24/2015

On Tuesday, March 24, 2015, the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals issued four published opinions and four unpublished opinions.

Washington v. Washington

Garcia v. Holder

Rott v. Oklahoma Tax Commission

United States v. Powell

Case summaries are not provided for unpublished opinions. However, published opinions are summarized and provided by Legal Connection.