COLORADO COURT OF APPEALS
September 7, 2017
2017 COA 115. No. 14CA0586. People v. Camarigg.
Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol—Impound—Vehicle—Inventory Search— Warrant—Prosecutorial Misconduct—Burden of Proof—Beyond a Reasonable Doubt—Evidence— Intent to Manufacture Methamphetamine.
After defendant was arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol (DUI), officers impounded his vehicle because it was parked in front of a gas pump at a gas station. The officers conducted an inventory search of the vehicle and discovered a sealed box containing items commonly used in the manufacture of methamphetamine. Based on those items, they obtained a warrant to search the vehicle and found additional items used to manufacture methamphetamine. Defendant moved to suppress the evidence obtained from the search and warrant The trial court denied the motion. A jury convicted defendant of DUI, careless driving, and possession of chemicals, supplies, or equipment with intent to manufacture methamphetamine.
On appeal, defendant argued that the trial court should have excluded evidence discovered in the inventory search of his vehicle and under the subsequently issued warrant. A vehicle is lawfully taken into custody if the seizure is authorized by law and department regulations and is reasonable. Inventory searches are an exception to the warrant requirement and are reasonable if (1) the vehicle was lawfully taken into custody; (2) the search was conducted according to "an established, standardized policy"; and (3) there is no showing that police acted in bad faith or for the sole purpose of investigation. Here, the decision to impound the vehicle was reasonable, and the inventory search was conducted according to standard policy and was constitutional. Because the inventory search was constitutional, evidence obtained under the subsequently issued warrant could not have been tainted.
Defendant next argued that the prosecutor improperly quantified the concept of reasonable doubt and lowered the burden of proof by using a puzzle analogy during closing argument. The prosecutor used a puzzle analogy to convey the difference between proof beyond a reasonable doubt and proof beyond all doubt, which other courts have found permissible. Further, the prosecutor used the analogy to rebut the defense argument that evidence of defendant's guilt was speculative. The Court of Appeals concluded there was no reasonable possibility that the prosecutor's analogy contributed to defendant's conviction. Additionally, the jury was properly instructed on the reasonable doubt standard. Therefore, any impropriety in the prosecutor's analogy was harmless beyond a reasonable doubt.
Lastly, defendant contended there was insufficient evidence that he intended to manufacture methamphetamine. However, there was sufficient circumstantial evidence from which a rational jury could conclude beyond a reasonable doubt that defendant intended to manufacture methamphetamine.
The judgment was affirmed.
2017 COA 116. No. 14C A2476. People v. Jones.
Sex Offender—Failure to Register—Evidence— Address—CRS § 16-22-108(3)(i)—CRS § 18-3-412.5(l)(g).
Jones was required to register as a sex offender. In 2011, he registered as a sex offender with the Aurora Police Department (Aurora P.D.) in Colorado. In August 2012, Jones was released from prison onto parole in an unrelated case, and he was given a voucher to stay at a particular motel in Aurora (and in Adams County). On August 12, 2012, Jones updated his sex offender registration with the Aurora P.D., listing the motel's address as his new residence. On August 20, 2012, when the voucher expired, Jones left the motel and did not return. He did not report a change of address with the Aurora P.D. and did not register as a sex offender with any other local law enforcement agency in Adams County or in any other jurisdiction in Colorado until 2013. The People charged him with failure to register as a sex offender between August 26, 2012 and November 28, 2012.
At the close of evidence of his trial, Jones moved for a judgment of acquittal, arguing that (1) the prosecution presented no evidence of where he resided during the relevant time period, and (2) ceasing to reside at an address and thereafter lacking a fixed residence does not fall within the meaning of "changing an address" under CRS 18-3-412.5(l)(g). The trial court denied the motion, and Jones was convicted of the charge.
On appeal, Jones contended that the...