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Criminal law: Colorado Supreme Court ruling may set hundreds free

According to a recent Colorado Supreme Court ruling, sentences of criminal defendants cannot include probation and prison time for the same case. That means that those whose sentences consist of a term of probation after time spent in prison have another chance at freedom. This ruling stunned criminal law attorneys in the Colorado judicial system, and the Office of Attorney General Phil Weiser was given a deadline to petition the court for a rehearing. 

This ruling affects all defendants whose sentences were the result of plea agreements. Authorities say 95% of all criminal case settlements involve plea deals, which means thousands of sentences might now be determined to be invalid. Jury verdicts will remain unchanged.

Warning signs that you're sharing the road with a stoned driver

It can be quite annoying to have to deal with people giggling and reeking of marijuana at the movie theater or your favorite restaurant. When you are on the road, crossing paths with someone under the influence could be downright dangerous.

While some research indicates that fatal crashes have declined since legalization in Colorado, that doesn't mean you should ignore the potential risks of sharing the road with someone under the influence of intoxicating chemicals like THC, the active intoxicant in marijuana. Although marijuana alone isn't particularly dangerous, many people have more than one intoxicant in their system when they drive impaired.

Suspected hit-and-run driver arrested after pedestrian's death

Authorities in Colorado are concerned about the number of fatal pedestrian accidents that have occurred in Aurora so far this year. Reportedly, at least eight pedestrians have lost their lives in traffic-related accidents in Aurora since January 2019. The latest fatality involved a hit-and-run driver who allegedly struck a 51-year-old woman on a recent Saturday morning.

Reportedly, the woman was a driver of a car that was involved in a collision with another vehicle in an intersection. While walking over to speak to the other driver, she was struck by a third car. That driver failed to remain at the scene. It is not clear whether the woman died at the crash scene or a hospital.

The biggest type of distracted driving isn't what you think

If someone asked you what the most common type of distracted driving was, what would you say? Odds are you would simply hold up your smartphone. You know that drivers get distracted when they make calls, send texts, browse social media and much more. The phone is a very common distraction that gets a lot of press.

Let's be very clear: It's important not to let the phone distract you behind the wheel. It is a serious issue. It's nothing to take lightly. However, it is not the most common type of driver distraction. That issue is much simpler: daydreaming.

Embezzlement charges filed against former city official

Reportedly, an investigation was launched into the activities of a former city district manager in Colorado. The investigation ultimately led to the man's arrest and a court appearance on embezzlement charges. Court documents allege the man kept cash paid to him for water, instead of depositing those payments into the appropriate Metro District bank account.

The investigation followed discrepancies apparently discovered by the Metro District. It is alleged that the former district manager committed embezzlement and theft from May 2017 through Sept. 30, 2018. The man was charged with felony theft and embezzlement for amounts ranging from $20,000 to $100,000. Investigators say thorough investigations were conducted before the arrest took place.

Whiplash injuries can affect quality of life for several years

Many people involved in car accidents suffer from whiplash to some extent. Whiplash occurs when there is a sudden movement of the neck forward, backward or sideways. This sudden movement is usually caused by an external impact, and this is why it is so common after a car accident.

Whiplash is often viewed as a minor injury, partly because it is so commonly reported. However, whiplash can vary widely in severity. In some situations, an injured person will suffer significantly for years to come.

Skyrocketing funeral costs can lead to stress after tragedy

Funeral costs are on the rise, and this can be a huge source of stress if your loved one passes away unexpectedly. If you are the next of kin of someone who dies in a tragic accident, such as a fatal car wreck, paying for their final expenses is likely one of your priorities. Once you look at these costs, you might realize that they are more than you are prepared to cover.

The average cost of a funeral

Hit-and-run driver convicted, awaiting sentence

Almost a year ago, a 44-year-old man lost his life in Colorado. This followed an accident in which a hit-and-run driver ran him down in Colorado Springs on Oct. 31, 2018. That driver was recently found guilty of leaving the scene of an accident that involved death, and he will be sentenced on Nov. 20.

Reportedly, the pedestrian accident victim was well-known because, every year on Sept. 11, he carried the American flag to honor those who lost their lives in the 9/11 attacks. The 26-year-old driver was arrested on the day following the accident. It is unclear whether the victim died at the crash scene or later at a hospital.

Slowing down during your commute could help keep you safe

Given the explosion in demand for Colorado real estate in recent years, many people found themselves priced out of urban or suburban homes. Quite a few professionals in the Englewood area now have to commute 30 minutes or more to work. Many people view that commute as lost time and will do anything in their power to minimize how much time they spend at the wheel.

From taking less-traveled side roads to avoid traffic congestion to driving a little bit faster than the posted speed limit, there are many tactics that can make a commute seem a little bit shorter. However, driving faster really isn't a viable or safe solution for modern drivers.

Colorado teen to be tried for allegedly committing violent crimes

On May 7, a shooting incident at the STEM School Highlands Ranch in Colorado caused the death of one student and injuries to eight others. In a recent preliminary hearing, the judge ruled that the prosecution had sufficient evidence to proceed with taking the case against the 19-year-old alleged participant to trial. Reportedly, the defendant claims to have been coerced into committing violent crimes by his 15-year-old friend, who was alleged to have pulled the trigger.

According to court documents, the younger student convinced the 19-year-old to help to kill as many classmates as possible. The guns they used were allegedly stolen from a safe in the home of the defendant. According to the defense, the 15-year-old did the shooting while the 19-year-old prevented the students from escaping the room.

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