Compiled by Hannah Garcia, LAW WEEK COLORADO
Editor’s note: Summaries are pulled directly from court opinions and edited for clarity and space.
COLORADO SUPREME COURT
March 16 opinions:
People v. Carrion
This interlocutory appeal challenged the trial court’s order suppressing statements made by defendant Luis Carrion, a native Spanish speaker, during custodial interrogation. Interrogating officers gave Carrion an oral Miranda advisement and provided him a written advisement on a waiver form in English, which he signed.
After finding the oral Miranda advisement deficient and that the prosecution presented insufficient evidence Carrion was able to read English, the trial court suppressed statements he made during the interrogation. The People, represented by the First Judicial District Attorney’s office, argued that the suppression order was erroneous because the record did not support the trial court’s factual findings. The Colorado Supreme Court, holding that the trial court’s factual findings are supported by the record and are not clearly erroneous, affirmed the trial court’s suppression order.
Ankeney v. Raemisch
The Department of Corrections appealed directly to the state Supreme Court from an order of the district court granting Randal Ankeney habeas corpus relief. Complying with a remand order from the Court of Appeals from an earlier appeal, the district court interpreted various statutory provisions regarding “good time” and “earned time” credit to require Ankeney’s release from prison, almost three years before the date calculated by the department. Crediting the time during which Ankeney remained unlawfully incarcerated, according to this interpretation, against his subsequent statutorily mandated period of parole, the district court also found him to have completed his parole term, and it therefore ordered his immediate release from parole supervision. The Colorado Supreme Court found the lower courts erroneously concluded that, for inmates convicted of crimes committed after July 1, 1993, good time credits awardable by section 17-22.5-301 of the Colorado Revised Statutes are to be applied against an inmate’s mandatory release date rather than merely to determine his parole eligibility. The justices determined that a proper application of the statutory deductions from his sentence to which Ankeney is entitled demonstrates that he has not completed service of his required term of parole and the judgment of the district court was reversed.