H. Michael Steinberg has over 32 years experience practicing Colorado criminal law. Mr. Steinberg strives to stay current with the ever changing aspects of criminal law issues and updates resulting in his extensive knowledge of successful criminal defense as well as appellate work. He is also an active member of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, the Colorado Criminal Defense Bar Association, the Colorado Trial Lawyer's Association, and the Colorado and Arapahoe Bar Associations.
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Colorado Mirand Rights Law.jpgBy Colorado Criminal Defense Lawyer – Attorney – Colorado Miranda Rights Law – H. Michael Steinberg

Colorado Miranda Rights Law is sometimes not only internally complex but is ever evolving for law enforcement since the original Miranda decision so many years ago.

Understanding the application of the Miranda decision – the imposition of the advisement and issues surrounding the waiver of your Miranda rights requires a close look at the law and what constitutes a valid waiver of those rights.

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Colorado Vehicle Homicide.jpgThe Charge of Vehicular Homicide – Manslaughter

The most devastating charge facing an individual who has made the unfortunate decision to drink and drive – is the charge of vehicular homicide. Colorado courts punish this crime much more harshly than several decades ago when I first starting prosecuting these cases. Back then – in the 1980’s and 1990’s – probation – possibly some jail and alcohol treatment of course was the “standard sentence.”

Today the sentence is much more harsh. It may be a sentence to probation with jail – usually the maximum of 2 years with work release authorized. Or more typically – in the more aggravated cases – it is a sentence to prison.

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Thumbnail image for JUSTICE COURT
By Colorado Sex Crimes Defense Lawyer – Attorney – H. Michael Steinberg

A recent case in New York City – clearly points out what can go wrong in a felony sex crime prosecution.

Darrell Dula – 26 – was one of four men – charged in a NY sexual assault case. His case was dismissed after an over zealous prosecutor was found to have violated New York’s criminal procedural laws involving basic fairness.

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As an ex Career DA and now as a Colorado criminal defense lawyer, I have been aware for more than 35  years of a loophole in the criminal law of Colorado that actually created an incentive for drunk drivers to flee the scene of car accidents.

That loophole has now been closed.

With the passage of House Bill 1084 – signed by the Governor on June 6, 2012 – the new law increases the possible penalties for leaving the scene of a serious bodily injury crash from a class 5 felony to a class 4 making it equivalent to possible penalties for drunk driving.

End the Incentive to Flee

The old Colorado law gave drunk drivers, especially repeat offenders, an incentive to not stop at the scene of a crash and call for help of injured people. It benefited drunk drivers with a lesser range of penalties for fleeing the scene and trying to hide out until they are sober. The consequence of this loophole at times might mean the life or death of someone needing immediate medical attention at the scene of a crash.

H. Michael’s Take:

Defending The Hit and Run Case In Colorado

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Former Greeley police officer Daniel Shepherd was found not guilty by a Colorado jury on February 8, 2012.

What makes this case so important – is that the jury looked at the “he said – she said” nature of the allegations – found both sides had lied or covered up – so they did what jurys are supposed to do – they focused on the absence of forensic evidence that would have pointed the way to the truth. This time – because of the incompetence of the police – there was none

In the words of one juror – who clearly got it right:

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A recent article in the Denver Post finally addresses the most recent attempts by Colorado Schools – hopefully to be followed by the Colorado State legislature – to reverse years of Zero-Tolerance policies in Colorado’s Public Schools and in the Courts.

Last year in December – another excellent article in the Denver Post quoted a Magistrate Kent Spangler, a Fort Collins Judge, who had this to say:

“Kids won’t gain a respect for the law, for their parents, for teachers, for rules in general if they’re told ‘You’re wrong! You messed up!’ and don’t take the time to get at the root of the problem,”

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A new Colorado Law – helps Sex Offenders Understand the Requirements of Sex Offender Registration.

The 2011 bill makes a number of modifications to the requirements for registering as a sex offender, including the following:

• county sheriffs are required to submit registration information for individuals who are required to register as sex offenders and are held for more than five days or are sentenced to a term of imprisonment in a county jail;

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In a recent press release on the 1st Judicial District Website in Colorado – Scott Storey – the elected DA – approaches the increasing problem of Sexting with a reasoned eye – recognizing that which most experts in the field understand – it is a matter of “growing up” and “coming of age” .. that leads to an understanding of the proper boundaries between the genders. It is not a sex offender crime in most cases.

In the following reprinted web page – DA Storey explains his reasoning.

He is to be commended for his common sense and not knee jerk response – as is often the case in this area.

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A Fort Carson soldier Chester Duncan, who was featured Sunday in a Gazette investigation of troops who deploy with pending felonies, appeared in court Monday on leave from Afghanistan. He hoped for a light sentence that would ensure he could return.

The judge did not give it to him.

In 4th Judicial District Court, the 28-year-old specialist pleaded guilty to choking his wife and slapping his daughter.

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The Following verdict in a Colorado Sexual Assault Trial demonstrates the many levels of testimony that can be admitted in a trial .. it is instructive at many levels for that reason

Jury convicts Valdez of sex crimes Thursday, Dec 30th, 2010

DEL NORTE, Colorado ・A Rio Grande County District Court jury deliberated for four hours before the criminal incest trial of Arthur Valdez ended with a verdict of guilty on two counts.