May 24, 2019

Colorado Supreme Court: Miranda Advisement Adequately Conveyed to Defendant Right to Attorney

The Colorado Supreme Court issued its opinion in Carter v. People on Monday, June 5, 2017.

Criminal Law—Miranda Warnings—Jury Deliberations.

Carter petitioned for review of the court of appeals’ judgment in People v. Carter, 2015 COA 36, ___ P.3d ___, which affirmed, among others, his conviction of conspiracy to commit first-degree murder. With regard to a videotaped interrogation by the police, the district court denied a motion to suppress defendant’s statements, rejecting all of his Fifth and Fourteenth Amendment claims, including his assertion that he had not been adequately advised, as required by Miranda v. Arizona, of his right to have an attorney present during interrogation. It also denied defendant’s motion to limit access to that videotape during jury deliberations. In a fractured opinion, in which all three members of the division of the court of appeals wrote separately, the intermediate appellate court affirmed with regard to both of these assignments of error.

The supreme court affirmed the judgment of the court of appeals. Because the Miranda advisement of defendant reasonably conveyed that he had a right to consult with counsel, both before and during any interrogation by the police, and because the district court did not abuse its discretion in permitting the jury unrestricted access to both a video recording and transcript of defendant’s custodial interrogation, the trial court did not err.

Summary provided courtesy of The Colorado Lawyer.

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