Castle Rock, CO asked in Animal / Dog Law for Colorado

Q: A friend of mine has 8 cats. She lives in a townhouse. Can she find out who filed a complaint against her?

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2 Lawyer Answers
Kristina M. Bergsten
Kristina M. Bergsten
PREMIUM
Answered
  • Animal & Dog Law Lawyer
  • Denver, CO
  • Licensed in Colorado

A: Possibly. It depends on the animal control division. But most likely not unless she sues and subpoenas the information.

Juliet Piccone
Juliet Piccone
Answered
  • Animal & Dog Law Lawyer
  • Englewood, CO
  • Licensed in Colorado

A: Yes. If criminal charges have been filed in municipal court she or her lawyer can and must request “discovery” and a witness list. I always file a detailed motion for discovery to ensure I receive all witness statements which includes body cam videos. Prosecutors rarely dig deep and typically pass along what law enforcement has sent them (which is usually incomplete and in my experience can leave out important evidence for the defense).

If county charges are pending discovery is mandatory, but takes a while.

if no changes are pending (or ongoing investigation) she will need to file an open records request (CORA, Colorado Open Records Request) for documentation of all recorded activity including complaints for her specific address. If the dept of Ag is involved (PACFA) she can go online and submit a CORA request as well, but PACFA takes anonymous complaints.

If an investigation is still pending most law enforcement agencies/PACFA will not release records; if charges are filed some agencies won’t release records but make you request discovery.

She must not harass or intimidate the complaining party or will be at risk for criminal charges for that.

Hopefully she invoked her 5th Amendment right against incriminating herself and did not allow a search/seizure without a warrant because if not everything she said can and will be used against her and can be twisted around by the officer in a report.

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