We frequently see cases involving Domestic Violence in our practice and we’ve reminded you that any charge can have the DV label. Now, we want to alert you to a trend occurring in many Colorado Courts like those in Adams County and Broomfield County, which rushes criminal cases involving Domestic Violence allegations. The idea, called “Fast Track”, is to bring people before a judge and DA quickly, before they can get a lawyer hired. This clever attempt to circumvent the U.S. Constitution’s 6th Amendment right to counsel is dangerous to persons charged with crimes.
Docket’s (the name for a court’s caseload) have grown, especially in the Denver metro counties like Arapahoe County, Denver Couny and Jefferson County. The court’s must keep the numbers down or they’d be working 24/7. This new Fast Track idea is to plea bargain cases quickly before defense attorneys get involved. A defense lawyer will want to see discovery and police reports. We like to interview witnesses and have our investigator dig into a victim’s history of false allegations. All of this takes time and grows the court’s docket.
Fast Track cases are wrong because they take advantage of people in a vulerable position in jail. These defendants have no lawyer to advise them and just want to get out of jail quick. People have house payments to make and they can’t do that if they lose their job sitting in jail. Courts will have Fast Track defendants appear before the judge within 24 hours, and then again quickly when the DA can propose a plea deal, usually the same day. The design of this program is clear: settle cases before defense attorneys get involved. More settled = smaller dockets.
The problem is that once a defendant / inmate is released from jail, they get perspective and realize a Domestic Violence conviction can hurt them for the rest of their life. They might lose their job, have a permanent restraining order, and never be able to possess firearms. So, they come to see our experienced Domestic Violence attorneys and learn they might be stuck with the conviction for the rest of their lives. Hoping to get out of jail, people can ruin their future.
We help men and women with Domestic Violence charges in Dolores County, Douglas County and San Juan County, and always encourage them to get a lawyer. After 21 years, we know this area of law well. Don’t trust your life to the Distirct Attorney who will encourage you to plead guilty. Instead, be smart, exercise your right to remain silent, and call us at 303-731-0719. Together, we can protect your future.