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People v. Dyson.

2021 COA 57. No. 19CA0459.  Criminal Law—Sentencing—Restitution.

April 29, 2021


Defendant attacked his ex-wife, B.D., fracturing her cervical spine and skull in a way that left skull fragments lodged in her brain. As B.D. was being admitted to the hospital, she suffered a stroke. B.D. spent a month on a respirator in an induced coma, underwent seven surgeries, and spent months at a rehabilitation facility. Following her release from the facility, B.D. received three procedures from an aesthetics spa related to her face and neck. Medicaid, B.D.’s insurer, declined to pay for these procedures because they were deemed to be cosmetic in nature.

Defendant pleaded guilty to attempted first degree (after deliberation) murder and was sentenced. Thereafter, B.D. sought restitution for the cost of the aesthetics procedures. Over defendant’s objection, the district court awarded B.D. $8,999 in restitution.

On appeal, defendant argued that the evidence was insufficient to show his conduct was the proximate cause of B.D.’s need for the aesthetics procedures. Here, B.D.’s testimony was sufficient to sustain the district court’s finding. The fact that B.D.’s medical records may not have given certain details, or that an expert did not testify, affected the weight, not the sufficiency, of her testimony.

Defendant also contended, the People conceded, and the court agreed that the amount of restitution awarded to B.D. was erroneously inclusive or duplicative of various expenses.

The order was affirmed in part and vacated in part, and the case was remanded to correct the restitution amount.

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

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