Colorado Supreme Court Decisions

The Colorado Supreme Court consists of seven justices, including a Chief Justice and six Associate Justices. All seven of the justices hear each case brought before the Supreme Court in a full panel, known as en banc review. These cases generally involve appeals from the Colorado Court of Appeals, but the Colorado Supreme Court also has direct jurisdiction over certain types of cases identified by Article VI of the Colorado Constitution. These include habeas corpus cases, criminal appeals, challenges to the constitutionality of statutes, Public Utilities Commission matters, and matters involving judicial misconduct, among others. The Colorado Supreme Court has the exclusive authority to set rules of practice and procedure that govern civil and criminal cases in courts throughout the state.

Justices on the Court are appointed by the Governor of Colorado, rather than being elected by voters. When a vacancy arises, the Colorado Supreme Court Nominating Commission must meet within 30 days to review candidates. To be eligible, a candidate must be under 72 years old, registered to vote in Colorado, and licensed to practice law in the state for the last five years. Once the Commission selects two or three finalists, the Governor will choose the new justice from that group. If the Governor does not make a selection, the current Chief Justice of the Colorado Supreme Court will make the decision. Once a justice has been selected, they will serve for at least two years and then seek retention in the next general election. If they are retained, they will go through a retention election every 10 years thereafter.

The Chief Justice of the Colorado Supreme Court serves as the chair of the Colorado Supreme Court Nominating Commission. The Chief Justice appoints chief judges in the Court of Appeals and district courts, and the Chief Justice has the authority to appoint other judges to serve on state courts. The other justices elect the Chief Justice.

Browse Opinions From the Colorado Supreme Court

Recent Decisions From the Colorado Supreme Court
Jagged Peak Energy v. Oklahoma Police Pension  
Date: November 21, 2022
Citation: 2022 CO 54
Docket Number: 21SC334

Justia Opinion Summary: The question this case presented for the Colorado Supreme Court's review centered on whether the court of appeals misapplied federal case law when it concluded that respondent Oklahoma Police Pension and Retirement…

Colorado v. Solis  
Date: November 14, 2022
Citation: 2022 CO 53
Docket Number: 22SA200

Justia Opinion Summary: In an interlocutory appeal, the State challenged a trial court order that granted defendant Jorge Solis’ motion to disqualify the entire Seventh Judicial District Attorney’s Office because his public defender, began…

Colorado Judicial Dept. 18th Judicial District  
Date: November 7, 2022
Citation: 2022 CO 52
Docket Number: 21SC548

Justia Opinion Summary: Abbey Dickerson appealed to the Judicial Department Personnel Board of Review (“Board”) after she was terminated by the Eighteenth Judicial District (“District”). As required by the Personnel Rules, the Board appointed…

R.W. & H.W. v. People in interest of E.W.  
Date: November 7, 2022
Citation: 2012 CO 3
Docket Number: 22sc86

Justia Opinion Summary: E.W. (the Child) was adjudicated dependent and neglected. Both parents were referred to services to treat substance abuse and were put on a family services plan. Both struggled to engage with their treatment plans.…

Colorado v. Turner  
Date: October 31, 2022
Citation: 2022 CO 50
Docket Numbers: 21SC79, 21SC277

Justia Opinion Summary: Terrel Turner and Christopher Cruse were jointly tried and convicted on charges related to the burglary of a marijuana dispensary. On the second day of trial, Yolanda Cruse, who is Cruse’s wife and Turner’s friend, was…

Matter of Brenda Storey
Date: October 4, 2022
Citation: 2022 CO 48
Docket Number: 21SA220
People v. A.C.  
Date: October 4, 2022
Citation: 2022 CO 49
Docket Number: 22SA73

Justia Opinion Summary: The State of Colorado filed a petition in delinquency against A.C. A.C.’s counsel moved for a competency evaluation, noting that A.C. had trouble paying attention and was on an individualized education plan at school due…

Plemons v. Colorado  
Date: September 26, 2022
Citation: 2022 CO 45
Docket Number: 21SC183

Justia Opinion Summary: Defendant Cheryl Plemmons intentionally spat on two sheriff deputies while they were attempting to determine if she was suicidal. The deputies arrested her for spitting on them, and the prosecution charged her with three…

In re State of Colorado v. Juul Labs, Inc.  
Date: September 26, 2022
Citation: 2022 CO 46
Docket Numbers: 22SA108, 22SA111

Justia Opinion Summary: Defendants were California residents who served in various capacities as officers or directors of JUUL Labs, Inc. (“JUUL”), an e-cigarette manufacturer, or its predecessor companies. The State of Colorado filed an…

In re Interest of A.S.M.  
Date: September 26, 2022
Citation: 2022 CO 47
Docket Number: 22SA71

Justia Opinion Summary: Following a preliminary hearing, a magistrate determined that probable cause existed to believe that A.S.M. had committed the delinquent acts alleged. A.S.M. timely sought review of the magistrate’s probable cause…

Colorado v. Deaner  
Date: September 26, 2022
Citation: 2022 CO 43
Docket Numbers: 22SA72, 22SA77

Justia Opinion Summary: Eduardo Barrera was driving a Jeep SUV eastbound on I-70 with Isaiah Deaner in the passenger’s seat. Trooper Bollen, an officer patrolling the highway, saw the SUV pass by and noted that it was an apparent rental vehicle…

People v. Barrera
Date: September 26, 2022
Citation: 2022 CO 44
Docket Number: 22SA77
Colorado v. Raider  
Date: September 12, 2022
Citation: 2022 CO 40
Docket Number: 21SC119

Justia Opinion Summary: At issue in this case was whether Colorado's prohibition against forced specimen collection in DUI-related offenses applied to all searches of people suspected of DUI, or only to warrantless searches. A Fort Collins…

Gorostieta v. People  
Date: September 12, 2022
Citation: 2022 CO 41
Docket Number: 21SC441

Justia Opinion Summary: The Colorado Supreme Court took the opportunity of this case to clarify what prosecutors had prove to establish a defendant’s identity as the perpetrator of a prior crime when the defendant’s conviction of that prior…

Colorado in interest of E.A.M. v. D.R.M.  
Date: September 12, 2022
Citation: 2022 CO 42
Docket Number: 22SC29

Justia Opinion Summary: As relevant here, a trial court has reason to know that a child is an Indian child when “[a]ny participant in the proceeding, officer of the court involved in the proceeding, Indian Tribe, Indian organization, or agency…

The opinions published on Justia State Caselaw are sourced from individual state court sites. These court opinions may not be the official published versions, and you should check your local court rules before citing to them. We make no warranties or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness, or adequacy of the information contained on this site, or the information linked to on the state site.