A VICTIM HAS A RIGHT TO RETAIN LEGAL COUNSEL (AN ATTORNEY) AND RECEIVE DISCOVERY IN THE CRIMINAL CASE.
The victim of a crime in Colorado has a right to retain an attorney and legal counsel. The victim has a right to retain an attorney in all matters related to the victim’s status as a complaining witness and alleged victim in a criminal case and any and all collateral civil or criminal matters of the same. The victim additionally has a right to retain an attorney as her “lawful representative” and “victim designee.” See C.R.S. § 24-4.1-302(3); see also C.R.S. §§ 24-4.1-303(15)(a) and (b).
In a criminal case, the victim can requests the prosecution and law enforcement provide the victim with copies of all discovery in the possession or control of the prosecution and/or law enforcement, whether inculpatory or exculpatory, as is required by “justice” and “due process” under sections 24-4.1-302.5(1) and 24-4.1-303(10)(a) and (b) of the Colorado Revised Statutes, and by all other applicable laws, including sections 24-4.1-101 through 24-4.1-304 of the Colorado Revised Statutes and article II, section 16a of the Colorado Constitution.
Specifically, a request for discovery to the victim in a criminal case should include, but not be limited to, the following information (regardless of the nature or purpose of such information) in the possession or control of the prosecution or law enforcement: the court and law enforcement file numbers of the criminal case; the contact information (including business telephone number) of all law enforcement officers assigned to investigate the case; all prosecutors assigned to the case and contact information (including business telephone number); copies of the charges filed against the defendant; a list of all witnesses (such as experts and lay witnesses – which include law enforcement) known to the prosecution or police; all witness statements (whether written, audio, video, recorded by law enforcement, or otherwise); all written reports and summaries of reports obtained or created by law enforcement through the course of their investigation; all electronic, digital, audio, and video recordings; all photographs, diagrams, charts, or graphs; all information relating to the use of expert witnesses including tests conducted, findings, statements, reports, or other information associated with an expertise or of a scientific nature; and all other items or information required to be provided to the defense under Rule 16 of the Colorado Rules of Criminal Procedure and the Constitution and laws of the State of Colorado and the United States. See C.R.S. § 24-4.1-302.5(1) (victim’s right to due process); see also C.R.S. §§ 24-4.1-303(10) and (11); C.R.S. § 24-4.1-301 et seq.
As a victim, you need legal counsel to help you take control of the prosecution and police. You need an attorney who will fight for your rights. You need to be able to bravely walk into the courtroom and know your interests are being protected.
MASTERSON HALL, P.C.
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