April 19, 2019

Archives for September 15, 2015

Judicial Performance and Nominating Commission Appointments Announced

This week, Governor Hickenlooper’s office announced the governor’s appointment of several members of judicial performance commissions throughout the state and one member of a judicial nominating commission. Armando Valdez of La Jara was appointed to the Twelfth Judicial District Nominating Commission, to serve as a non-attorney and a Democrat from Conejos County. His term will expire December 31, 2020. Attorney Norman Ray Mueller of Denver was reappointed to the Second Judicial District Judicial Performance Commission. His term is effective December 1, 2015, and will expire November 30, 2019. Lindsey Parlin of Leadville was reappointed to the Fifth Judicial District Judicial Performance Commission, to serve as an attorney for a term effective from December 1, 2015, through November 30, 2019. Michael Andrew Goldman of Durango was reappointed to the Sixth Judicial District Judicial Performance Commission. He is an attorney who will serve a term from December 1, 2015 through November 30, 2019. Attorney Christopher Michael Turner of Pueblo was also reappointed to the Tenth Judicial District Judicial Performance Commission for a term effective December 1, 2015, through November 30, 2019. Amanda C. Hopkins of Alamosa, an attorney, was reappointed to the Twelfth Judicial District Judicial Performance Commission to serve from December 1, 2015, through November 30, 2019. Russell Allen Zane of La Junta was reappointed to the Sixteenth Judicial District Judicial Performance Commission. He will serve from December 1, 2015, through November 30, 2019. Attorney Lance Phillip Timbreza of Grand Junction was reappointed to the Twenty-first Judicial District Judicial Performance Commission, also to serve from December 1, 2015, through November 30, 2019. And finally, Peter Ortego of Lewis, who is an attorney, was reappointed to the Twenty-second Judicial District Judicial Performance Commission for a term effective December 1, 2015, through November 30, 2019.

Judicial nominating commissions are responsible for reviewing applications and selecting nominees for appointment to judicial vacancies in their district. Judicial performance commissions were created to provide voters with fair, responsible, and constructive evaluations of judges in their judicial district who face retention elections. For more information about the commissions and the appointments, click here.

Colorado Supreme Court: Judicial Evidentiary Rulings Control in Eminent Domain Valuation Hearings

The Colorado Supreme Court issued its opinion in Regional Transportation District v. 750 West 48th Ave., LLC on Monday, September 14, 2015.

Eminent Domain—Commissioner Proceedings—Duties of Trial Court.

The Supreme Court held that judicial evidentiary rulings control in eminent domain valuation hearings. A valuation commission is bound by the supervising court’s evidentiary rulings. Accordingly, the Court affirmed the portion of the court of appeals’ judgment that approved of the supervising judge’s instruction that the commission disregard previously admitted evidence as irrelevant. The Court reversed the portion of the judgment that permitted the commission to alter the judge’s in limine evidentiary ruling.

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

Colorado Court of Appeals: Municipality Waived Immunity for Dangerous Condition of On-street Parking Spot

The Colorado Court of Appeals issued its opinion in McKinley v. City of Glenwood Springs on Thursday, September 10, 2015.

Colorado Governmental Immunity ActInjuries—Parking Area—Municipal Street—Immunity—Waiver.

Linda McKinley pulled her car into a parking spot on a municipal street in the City of Glenwood Springs (City). She stepped out of her car and tripped in a four- to five-inch deep depression in the pavement of the parking area. The McKinleys filed a complaint seeking to hold the City liable for Linda McKinley’s injuries and William McKinley’s loss of consortium. The City moved to dismiss the complaint based on the Colorado Governmental Immunity Act (CGIA), which was denied by the trial court.

On appeal, the City argued that the trial court erred in denying its motion to dismiss based on the CGIA. CRS § 24-10-106(1)(d)(I) of the CGIA waives immunity for injuries occurring in parking areas of a municipal street. Because the trial court’s finding that the depression was a dangerous condition that interfered with traffic is supported by evidence in the record, the trial court’s order was affirmed.

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

Colorado Court of Appeals: Driver’s Request to Speak to Attorney Constituted Refusal to Take Breath or Blood Test

The Colorado Court of Appeals issued its opinion in Haney v. Colorado Department of Revenue on Thursday, September 10, 2015.

Intoxication—Driving—Express Consent Law—Refusal—Revocation.

Officer Wright stopped Haney’s vehicle for a traffic violation. Upon contacting Haney, Wright observed Haney displayed signs of possible intoxication. When Wright advised Haney of the express consent law and gave him the choice of taking a blood test or a breath test, or refusing testing, Haney told the officer that he wanted to speak to an attorney before choosing any test. Haney was transported to the police department, where he signed the “Express Consent Affidavit and Notice of Revocation” without taking any tests. Haney’s license was thereafter revoked. The district court reversed the revocation, finding that the officer’s actions could have misled Haney into believing he had the right to speak to an attorney before selecting a test.

On appeal, the Colorado Department of Revenue’s Division of Motor Vehicles contended that the record supports its determination that Haney refused to submit to the testing required by the express consent statute and that the district court erred in concluding otherwise. A driver has no right under the express consent statute to confer with an attorney before deciding whether to consent to testing. Generally, if a driver does not submit to testing “because he wants to talk to his attorney before deciding whether to take the test, it is deemed a refusal as a matter of law.” However, if police cause a driver to misunderstand the state of the law, the driver “cannot be held strictly accountable for his refusal” of testing. Here, Haney presented no evidence that he was, in fact, confused or misled. Because the hearing officer’s ultimate finding that Haney refused testing was based on application of the proper legal standards and is supported by substantial evidence in the record, it is binding on the district court. The district court’s judgment was reversed and the case was remanded for reinstatement of the revocation order.

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

Tenth Circuit: Unpublished Opinions, 9/14/2015

On Monday, September 14, 2015, the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals issued one published opinion and four unpublished opinions.

United States v. Green

United States v. Gutierrez

Hernandez Espitia v. Lynch

Smith v. Colvin

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