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Colorado Supreme Court Opinions
May 14, 2012

2012 CO 34. No. 12SA24. In re People v. Angel.
Rules of Criminal Procedure—Discovery—Prosecutorial Work Product.

The Supreme Court determined that Crim.P. 16(I)(e)(1) protects against the disclosure of a prosecutor’s opinion work product, and made the rule absolute. The Court reversed the district court’s discovery order and held that the prosecutorial work product exception under Crim.P. 16(I)(e)(1) protects from compelled disclosure all opinion work product prepared by the prosecution in anticipation of any criminal prosecution. The Court remanded the case to the district court to determine, through an in camera, ex parte review, whether the contested materials contain protected prosecutorial opinion work product.

2012 CO 35. Nos. 11SA136 & 11SA54. Concerning the Revised Abandonment List of Water Rights in Water Division 2 and Concerning the Protest of Thorsteinson in Pueblo County: Harrison v. Simpson, State Engineer; Concerning the Application for Change of Water Right of Harrison, Personal Representative: Harrison v. St. Charles Mesa Water District.
Water Law—Change of Diversion Point—Stipulation—Unconstitutional Taking—Abandonment of Right.

John Harrison appealed directly to the Supreme Court from adverse rulings of the Water Court for Water Division No. 2 in two separate cases. With regard to Harrison’s Application for a Change of Water Right, the water court granted the State Engineers’ motion to dismiss at the close of Harrison’s case. The water court found that he was required, but failed, to establish the historic use of the right, to which he sought a change in the point of diversion. With regard to Harrison’s protest to the inclusion of the interests he claimed in the Mexican Ditch on the Division Engineer’s decennial abandonment list, the water court granted the Engineer’s motion for abandonment, as a stipulated remedy for Harrison’s failure to succeed in his change application.

The Court affirmed the water court’s dismissal of Harrison’s application, holding that (1) Harrison neither proved historic use of the right for which he sought a change nor was excepted from the requirement that he do so as a precondition of changing its point of diversion, and (2) denying a change of water right for failing to prove the historic use of the right does not amount to an unconstitutional taking of property. The Court reversed the water court’s order granting the Engineers’ motion for abandonment, because Harrison did not stipulate to an order of abandonment as the consequence of failing to succeed in his change application, but only as the consequence of failing to timely file an application reflecting historic use, a condition with which he complied.

Colorado Supreme Court Opinions