Colorado v. Rock

The State appealed an appellate court’s judgment reversing Priscilla Rock’s convictions for second degree burglary and theft, relating to a break in and her ex-boyfriend’s parents’ house. Defendant conceded that she entered the house without authorization, but testified that she did so for the purpose of locating a memory card containing digital pictures of her son, whose father is the ex-boyfriend. She further testified that after she failed to locate the memory card in the house, she took the items from the home to hold them as “collateral,” in hopes of compelling her ex-boyfriend to deliver the memory card to her later, without ever intending to permanently keep these items from their owners. The prosecution, however, presented evidence that the defendant sold and gave away some of the items. The trial court denied Rock’s request for an additional, lesser-included-offense instruction on second degree criminal trespass, on the ground that second degree criminal trespass was not an included offense of second degree burglary. The court of appeals reversed, concluding that in denying Rock’s request, the trial court erred and that the error was not harmless with regard to either of Rock’s convictions. Because second degree criminal trespass was not a lesser included offense of second degree burglary under the strict elements test, the Colorado Supreme Court reversed the judgment of the court of appeals is reversed. View "Colorado v. Rock" on Justia Law