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People v. Burgandine.

2020 COA 142. No. 18CA1072. Criminal Law—Stalking.

October 8, 2020

Defendant relentlessly texted and called his ex-girlfriend for seven hours. Many of the texts and calls contained threats against her and others. A jury found defendant guilty of harassment and credible threat stalking.

On appeal, defendant contended that the term “contacts” in CRS § 18-3-602(1)(a), under which the prosecution charged him, can’t reasonably be interpreted to include general communications such as phone calls and text messages because phone calls and text messages fall under a different subsection of the stalking statute covering “any form of communication,” and he was not charged under that subsection. Because he was not charged under the latter subsection, defendant maintained that insufficient evidence supported his credible threat stalking conviction and it must be vacated. The Court of Appeals construed the term “contacts” under subsection (1)(a) to include phone and text message communications, according to the plain and ordinary meaning of the word. Further, the evidence sufficiently supported defendant’s conviction.

The judgment was affirmed.

Official Colorado Court of Appeals proceedings can be found at the Colorado Court of Appeals website.

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