Colorado Criminal Law: What Is the Crime of False Reporting All About?
Denver Colorado Criminal Defense Lawyer – Law Firm for the Defense of False Reporting Crime
Often – alleged victims of domestic violence – are later caught in the conundrum of wanting to admit to the police that they lied to the police initially – which lies led to the arrest of a loved one – but they fear the possibility that they themselves would be charged with a crime.
If the alleged victim does “confess” their lies to law enforcement – the charge – for falsely reporting the case is – of course – the Colorado Crime of False Reporting.
Here is the Colorado crime of False Reporting:
18-8-111. False reporting to authorities.
(1) A person commits false reporting to authorities, if:
(a) He knowingly causes a false alarm of fire or other emergency to be transmitted to or within an official or volunteer fire department, ambulance service, or any other government agency which deals with emergencies involving danger to life or property; or
(b) He makes a report or knowingly causes the transmission of a report to law enforcement authorities of a crime or other incident within their official concern when he knows that it did not occur; or
(c) He or she makes a report or knowingly causes the transmission of a report to law enforcement authorities pretending to furnish information relating to an offense or other incident within their official concern when he or she knows that he or she has no such information or knows that the information is false; or
(d) He or she knowingly provides false identifying information to law enforcement authorities.
(2) False reporting to authorities is a class 3 misdemeanor. (up to six months in jail and a $1,000.00 fine).
(3) For purposes of this section, “identifying information” means a person’s name, address, birth date, social security number, or driver’s license or Colorado identification number.
A Fact Pattern for False Reporting:
Recently a young woman in Douglas County, Colorado was accused of false reporting after accusing a police officer of sexually assaulting her.
She was arrested on charges of false reporting, forgery, and attempting to influence a public servant.
The incident happened at a bar. The young later and several friends were at a Tavern in Parker, Colorado. The woman was asked to leave because the bar was closing. She refused.
The bar staff called the Parker Police for help in removing Petersen from the bar. The young woman was escorted out of the bar by two officers.
Later that morning she reported that she was “beaten and raped” by one of the police officers who had asked her to leave.
The Douglas County Sheriff’s Office investigated the case. Detectives conducted the investigation and determined that she was not assaulted by anyone. Detectives discovered significant evidence including video footage and phone records that showed her report was untrue.
While this was an extreme case, alleged victims should be aware that they may be charged with false reporting – should they change their version of the events in a case. The truth is ¨C it is difficult – if not impossible for the prosecutor to prove the case and politically not a very popular move on the DA¡®s part. Incarcerating and prosecuting a person under the circumstances of a domestic violence case solves nothing. It only makes things worse.
Excellence in the courtroom is the result of years of trial and courtroom experience. Mr. Steinberg has successfully tried jury trials and presented cases of all types before some of the toughest and well-known judges in the Denver area. He has handled criminal cases of virtually every conceivable variety and looks forward to each new case as a fresh challenge to succeed and bring about a good result for his clients.
If you are faced with the possibility of being charged with false reporting – or you believe you are being accused if a crime by someone who has falsely reported a crime against you – call our firm.