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October 12, 2010 08:05 PM UTC

Buck Rape Case Revelations Get Even Worse

  • by: Colorado Pols

UPDATE: as seen on MSNBC this evening:

UPDATE #2: We’ve been told by competent attorneys, including attorneys with prosecutorial experience, that the recording transcribed below might well have been admissible under Colorado law. This needs to be followed up on urgently by the press–was Buck the one who represented this evidence as inadmissible? Much discussion on this topic in comments below.


Today’s update on the developing story 2005 rape case in Weld County that Ken Buck refused to prosecute, from the Colorado Independent’s Scot Kersgaard–with national news outlets jumping on this story right and left, and especially after you read this latest update, the unfolding disaster it represents for Buck’s campaign is very close to undeniable.

While Buck claims the case was so flawed as to have been impossible to prosecute, the fact is the suspect virtually confessed [Pols emphasis], according to a police transcript (below) of a phone call between the victim and suspect.

In establishing whether there were grounds to arrest the suspect, Greeley police had the victim phone the suspect from the police station. That call was recorded and entered into evidence…

Victim: “You do realize that … it’s rape.”

Suspect: “Yeah, I do.” [Pols emphasis]

Victim: “Like in a number of different ways, because I didn’t want to do it and because I was intoxicated and because I was afraid.”

Suspect: “Yes I do. I know.”

As Kersgaard notes, this wasn’t actually admissible evidence, as it was recorded without the knowledge of both parties. But at this point, it’s not about whether or not the case could be reopened–it’s about Buck’s presumptions, the way he dismissed her allegations both privately and in the press. It’s about whether or not an admission of guilt, admissible or not, was enough to provoke Buck’s due diligence: and for reasons not satisfactorily explained, the answer seems to be “no.”

And over at Daily Kos, two of Ken Buck’s “woman problem” narratives begin to merge–into a most distressing possible reason why Buck didn’t prosecute this case. More transcript:

BUCK: There are a lot of things that I have a knowledge of, that I would assume (name of possible suspect redacted) knows about and that they have to do with, perhaps, your motives for (unintelligible) and that is part of what our calculation has been in this.

VICTIM: I’m interested to hear more about that, my motives, for what this has been.

BUCK: You have, you have had HIS baby, and you had an abortion.

VICTIM: That’s false, that’s just false. [Pols emphasis]

BUCK: Why don’t you clarify?

VICTIM: I did have a miscarriage; we had talked about an abortion. That was actually year and a half ago. So …

BUCK: That would be something that you can cross-examine on, that would be “something that might be a motive for trying to get back at somebody.”

Our readers very quickly picked up on this exchange as well in comments yesterday.

As Jed Lewison at Kos points out, the only person who had asserted the victim had an abortion was the alleged perpetrator–and as you can plainly read above, Buck doesn’t question his story. Only that of the victim. What’s more, as Lewison asks, why would an abortion–the choice of the victim–become a motivation for a “revenge” allegation from her later? And what about Buck’s choice of words to describe this supposed motive, “you have had HIS baby and you had an abortion?”

How is this not what it plainly appears to be, folks?


110 thoughts on “Buck Rape Case Revelations Get Even Worse

    1. refusing to lift a finger for a rape victim because she didn’t pass his 19th century litmus test.

      I used to kinda like Buck. What an asshole.

  1. From the Fox 31 comments:

    This women sounds like she is having liberal w hores remorse and the Dem’s are using it.

    I’m starting to think Buck’s use of the dogwhistle is not accidental.

  2. Add to that Buck’s support of Amend.62 (Person hood) Clearly Buck has a problem with miscarriages too.

    no matter What Buck holds a hard line when it comes to Woman’s choice.

    Hell most likely Buck discounts a Woman’s Opinion entirely. He knows what is best for others apparently.

  3. The reporter just makes a bald assertion and has no back up.  Who told him that it wasn’t admissible???  Why isn’t it admissible?  Police and prosecutors use tapes from wires all the time.  In a civil context in Colorado, as long as one person to a conversation knows that it’s being taped, it is admissible.  I think this reporter is wrong.  Let’s ask another DA whether this type of evidence is admissible.  Why should we give up this argument based upon the bald assertion of a reporter.  They’re wrong all the time.  Let’s get the reporter to do his homework and print a big retraction if he is wrong.

    1. Secret recordings by one party to a case of another party to the case would not be admissible in a criminal case under the federal rules of evidence.  It’s too easy to set someone up.  In terms of

      Police and prosecutors use tapes from wires all the time

       I would hope they have a court order authorizing such tapes.  Otherwise, they are out.

            1. and see for yourself — they are virtually identical to the federal, which are the ones studied in law schools because they are the more universally applied.  So, yes, the FRE principles govern this case.

              1. Look, I practice criminal defense, and I wish these recorded “pretext calls” would not be admissible against my clients.  But, they are almost always admitted over defense objection.  The CRE specifies that such statements are admissible as “statements against interest” and/or “admissions by a party opponent.”

                1. though predicting judges is always hard.  But admissible as what?  Several bloggers call them a “confession.”  It’s far from that…he can argue he was entrapped, he was just going along with his girlfriend because she was hysterical, etc.  It’s up to the jury to weigh that he said, she said.  That’s very different than his being in custody, given a Miranda warning, and then dictating and signing a confession to the police.  I accept your expertise that it is in as either a hearsay exception or admissible hearsay (I never could tell the difference between those two and the authors of my evidence text admitted they couldn’t either.  But, ok, it’s in, but its no smoking gun.  And that lets a lot of other stuff come in to impeach the statement of the putative victim.   I’m not trying to try the case on the blog.  I’m saying that, so far, I have seen no reason to second guess Buck’s conclusion that this case could not be successfully prosecuted.  

                    Now, if Buck is indicted for foot-in-mouth disease for the “buyer’s remorse” line, I’ll happily prosecute.  

                  Strictly for my education, cj, in these pretext calls the private citizen is clearly acting as an agent for the police.   How do they get around Miranda?  (I know, there are a lot of exceptions to Miranda.  But what’s their excuse on these?)

                  1. It’s a two part test, and both have to be present for a Miranda warning and waiver to be required.  1.  Is it interrogation–questions (or statements) that could be designed to elicit an incriminating response?  and 2.  Was the person in custody–subjected to the formal constraints associated with arrest?

                    Because the suspect here was clearly not in custody, there was no requirement that the police or their agent advise him of his Miranda rights.

                    A separate question concerns whether the statements were voluntary, which is a more complicated analysis with 10 or 12 factors to it.  But the odds of winning on that are almost always slim to none, and usually slim just left on the last train out of town.

      1. There wasn’t a warrant on the tap.  If a private citizen had done this without police involvement, it would by easily admissible here in Colorado, which does not IIRC have all-party consent laws.  With the police, I’m less clear on the admissibility of this recording.

        1. “It depends”

          Everything can be filtered using that phrase due to nuances and a bunch of other stuff. The legal profession relies on the specific meaning of a word, it is that specific meaning that is open to “it depends”.

        2. That’s my point.  The victim made a call to the perp.  Why is that any different then when the police put a wire on an informant and tape it from across the street?  I know it’s not a civil case.  Voyager are you a criminal lawyer or have some other experience which gives you authority on this matter, or are you guessing like the rest of us?  Same for you Phoenix Rising?  If not, I’d really rather have someone who knows something about this to tell me that this line wasn’t just fed to us by the Republican noise machine.

          1. By “tap” I meant recording the call, which the police had the victim initiate.  If the police rig you up with a wire for a criminal prosecution, is there a warrant required, or is the permission of the person who’s wired sufficient?

            I don’t disagree with your point – I don’t know and was hoping someone would respond with something definitive.  CJ identifies this as a pretext call, usually (under what circumstances not?) admitted in to evidence.

            Regardless of the admissibility of the call recording, the suspect admits in the police report that the victim said “no” at one point and throughout much of the rest of it was incapable of giving consent.

            I disagree with those who are saying there was a consensus that the case was unwinnable – and, apparently, so did a majority of the attorneys the victim sought out for counseling.  All we have to go on for “unwinnable” are Buck’s dismissive and degrading comments, the recent comments of the police chief (whose statement contradicts the recommendation prepared by his department), and the supposed but unconfirmed involvement of the Boulder DA’s office.

          2. and just finished studying the rules of evidence.  You say you know it’s not a civil case, but your comment said such unauthorized wiretaps were used in civil cases, which doesn’t mean they could be used in a rape case.  Again, a wiretap or an informant on a wire is generally authorized by a court order.  But the fourth, fifth and sixth amendments apply in criminal cases even when liberals don’t like them, just as they do when conservatives are outraged.    I remember when the Jeffco DA had to throw out a case because a neighbor had illegally taped a neighbor’s phone conversations.  Ironically, such taping was illegal until a few weeks before they did it.  But if you try to set up someone with a phone call, ask them leading questions, tape it without their knowledge, and ex[pect to get it into court — dream on.    

            1. Federal wiretapping laws apply only when neither party to the conversation consents to its intercept.  Some states have laws that prohibit recording unless both parties consent, but Colorado does not.  I am not a criminal law guy so there may be something I’m not aware of, but I’m pretty sure it would be admissible.

                1. Established caselaw holds that this is not a wiretap.  A wiretap is when someone not a party to the conversation secretly (unknown to either party) eavesdrops on the conversation via electronic means.  That is illegal, even for law enforcement, absent a warrant. This is different–it is single party consent.  Anyone familiar with the criminal law will give you the same answer, every time–it is admissible in court.  It is a favorite tool of law enforcement in sexual assault cases, especially child sexual assault cases where the victim knows the alleged offender.  Law enforcement has the alleged victim make a “pretext call” with a script, designed to get the suspect to confess.  The confession obtained is admissible against the defendant.

                2. I’ve read all of them at one time or another, and I just don’t know why it wouldn’t be.  Granted, I’ve never had occasion to read them with this issue in mind, but I like to think I would remember if there was something there on it (and I get the feeling CJ knows what he’s taking about on this one, more so than me).

  4. Well, that’s an issue many of us have here with the Republicans. They REFUSE to admit when they are wrong. They REFUSE to accept scientific facts. They REFUSE to see the demise of the middle class. They REFUSE to acknowlege Saint Reagan’s and Saint Bush’s failings. They REFUSE “what is plain to see” to the rest of us.

    The level of obfuscation, hypocrisy, denial, distraction and outright lying that passes for Republican discussions is “plain to see”.

  5. Nothing from the paper that dare not speak its name.

    I guess they’re letting the Buck campaign tell them what a “reputable news organization” should or shouldn’t do.  Meanwhile it’s all over the left-wing echo-chamber.

    1. But this diary has been up for 90 minutes without the Buck shills spinning away. I’m guessing the TPM took longer for Buck’s blogger outreach person to write this morning. Wouldn’t want to post something without running it by Buck HQ first.

      1. Maybe the Buck team thought twice about the whole “defend the rapist, condemn the victim” shilling strategy but are having a hard time coming up with a replacement.

        It’s difficult to defend the indefensible, but I imagine they’ll try as hard as they can once they are issued the talking points.

      2. Buck’s #1 shill didn’t make an appearance on the original thread yesterday, and he’s a no-show here, too.

        Instead the response from the Buck campaign has been to shoot the messenger, as if ProgressNow is just making up the whole incident.

        Meanwhile, every revelation keeps making it worse. So now it appears that Buck refused to prosecute because he thought that the woman once had an abortion, despite the fact that the perp had confessed.

        How long can the DP ignore the story?  

        1. H-Man has left the building.

          It’s pretty common with shill types on this site.  They leave the good ones like LB (which I see below) to duke it out in their wake…

            1. Hey, racist had a change of heart and thinks Buck supporters are being too hard on the rape victim!

              Oh wait, no, I misread it. Racist is still defending rape.

    2. story, I don’t suppose they’ll feel compelled to wait for Denver’s mainstream media to write about it. And will happily bring it ASAP to the attention of Colorado electorate.

      We shall see.

      As for Denver’s newspaper-of-record, maybe they’re actually taking the time to do some original reporting of their own. Sounds like a complex story, esp. given the apparent concurrence by the Boulder DA’s office.

      Perhaps more suited for a last minute Bennet attack ad. Or for the blogosphere, where heat fancies itself as light.  

      1. and if Denver’s big daily is taking some time to report it, you can bet there will be other revelations too. It’s premature to presume they’re sitting on it for the reasons suggested above.

  6. This one may be the most appalling in Colorado.

    So appalling that I broke my exile to comment.

    While I have no opinion on the case other than innocent until proven guilty, prosecutorial discretion should not allow people to prosecute (or not) based on their personal feelings about either the defendant or the victim.

    Now I return to exile.

    1. But they have this authority.  That’s the problem when you elect people like Ken Buck and Carol Chambers (she also refused to prosecute a rape case and the Supreme Court – which is very liberal – upheld her) who have a political agenda.  They don’t prosecute cases for political reasons.  It’s what the Republican US Atty scandal was all about.  A number of their appointees had the nerve to tell the Bush administration that they weren’t going to prosecute certain cases and were immediately fired.

  7. This isn’t a snarky or trick question.

    Isn’t part of a DA’s job to make the decision on which cases to prosecute based on possibility of conviction?

    Also, didn’t the victim basically say that she would have been ok with the non-prosecution if Buck had explained it to her in a softer manner? (I’m paraphrasing).

      1. …he has any way of getting a conviction, isn’t his responsibility not to move forward?

        Is the inference here that he is refusing to prosecute because he looks down on her because she had an abortion?

        1. Didn’t the Boulder DA’s office agree that the case wasn’t prosecutable?  Were they also motivated by their distaste for abortions?

          Is that the gist of what I’m reading here is that Buck is being accused of not helping a rape victim because she had an abortion?

          1. (Or was it the police chief’s word, which contradicts the police report written at the time of the incident?)

            There has been no confirmation from the Boulder DA’s office, nor any word on what exactly the Boulder DA’s office might have been sent to evaluate.  (Were they sent a biased summary for review, or did they go over the police report and interviews independently?)

            The gist of what you’re hearing is, so far, threefold: (1) that Buck used denigrating language when discussing the case – language that should be unacceptable when talking about a rape case unless the DA is prepared to file false claims charges, (2) was dismissive of the case because he believed the suspect’s so-far unsubstantiated claim that the victim had an abortion, and (3) quite possibly didn’t prosecute a case where the suspect admitted at least twice that he had committed the crime.  And, yes, I think there are some people saying it’s because of the abortion claim (which the victim denies).

              1. The consensus seems to be that the rape case was unwinnable.  The victim even says that she could accept that conclusion.  What’s inexcusable, however, is that he basically implied that she asked for it and that the rape was her fault.

                Add that to his stance that abortion should be illegal even in rape cases, it’s clear that he has absolutely zero respect for women.

              2. On the face of it, I sort of agree with you.  I have always felt that this election will be about jobs and the economy.

                But you have to get past the face of it.

                This will be a very close election.  If this story will sway even 3 percent of the electorate because Buck is an insensitive, misogynous lout who puts his won-lost record above seeking justice, then it will hurt him.  Big time.

                As it should.

                  1. How dare she slightly imperil a Republican’s chances this year? The utter gall! The apostasy!

                    This never would have happened if the schools had remained segregated in the 1960s.  

                  2. Otherwise I would be tempted to agree with you on this comment.


                    Armchair prosecutors

                    Isn’t it so easy to second guess?

                      And I would never, ever, live down the shame of agreeing with you on anything.

                      So just shut up.  Or at least call me a pansy, like bjwilson does, so I can keep my good standing in the world community.

    1. But from what we can gather in the transcripts, in Buck’s refusal to prosecute he blames the victim. And before you say you don’t see/hear that, why else would he bring up the issue of whether she’d had an abortion? I find it hard to read any other way.

      The victim was a rape victim advocate. She wasn’t naive wrt the difficulty of prosecuting the rape case in court. She also knows that the perp admitted that he raped her. So while she may have been ready to drop it and move on, she wasn’t ready to assume the blame for her own rape.

      My 2 cents. YMMV.

    2. And perhaps there’s something in this that would make a reasonable prosecutor say “can’t get a conviction on this”, but right now, given the police report in which the suspect says the victim said “no” and both victim and suspect admit the victim was not capable through at least some portion of the incident of giving consent, followed up by this taped phone call in which the suspect admits flat out that it was a rape, I don’t see where that decision came from.

      Today’s installment, unlike yesterday’s, really calls into question the basis for Buck’s decision (as opposed to the denigrating language he used when discussing the case).  And the optics on it are IMHO quite bad for Buck.

    3. That’s what needs to be determined.  Glad to see that the Buck defenders are finally on the job.  Seems pretty weak to me.  Not the usual make a bad thing into a good thing.  Guess even they can’t stomach smearing the rape victim.

    4. It’s really difficult to get a conviction even with tons of evidence, and a typical rape defense is that the accuser is a slut and a harlot who probably had an abortion and was asking for it anyway and is just experiencing buyer’s remorse. (That usually comes from the defense attorney though, not the prosecuting attorney.)

      So a lot of them don’t go through the trauma and just try and deal with it in therapy. Some manage to live normal lives afterwards. Some remain traumatized forever.

      You don’t get to decide how a rape victim feels about her rape or about the prosecution of it. I’d expect a sentiment like that from “There was no rape” Wilson, but I thought you were a bit more sensitive than that towards women.

    5. I think I am pretty immune from the charge of being a Buck shill — certainly hundreds of postings by bjwilson, a true buck shill, calling me a “pansy” should give me some credibility on this point.  

        But a prosecutor does have a responsibility to see that at least certain minimal standards of credibility are met — and a judge will hold him to that.  I think his choice of language was very unfortunate.  But saying that a jury might find reasonable doubt in such a case is a reasonable conclusion.  There is a vast difference between a civil case — preponderance of evidence — and the criminal test of guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

        The worst thing from the victim’s standpoint was that she said she had said no — but was unsure whether she had repeatedly said no because she was so drunk.  Under the law, being that drunk means you are too drunk to give consent, so technically it would be rape anyway.   But trying to get that argument past 12 skeptical jurors — and that reasonable doubt thing — helps explain why , according to the Greely Tribune, the independent review from the Boulder DA agreed the case was not prosecutable.

        Buck is guilty of foot in mouth disease, not prosecutorial misconduct, in this case.

       Now, from a political perspective, is being insensitive to rape victims reason to vote against him?  It’s as good a reason as any.  Hell, I’d vote against him because he has Weld County bullshit on his boots, not good old fashioned Phillips County bullshit like that on my boots.

        But nothing released so far has convinced me that Buck was guilty of misconduct in this case, beyond a poor choice of words.  He should have talked about reasonable doubt and let it go at that.    

      1. the bullshit on my boots is from my own bulls.

        And cows.   And pigs.  And chickens.  And even turkeys.  We were pretty broadminded on our farm when it came to producing large quanties of manure.  But the steers I raised and sold in my 4-H projects were sold and invested in U.S. savings bonds — and more than paid for my tuition at CU.

          So, yeah, I’m kind of proud of that bullshit on my boots.  Buck’s only problem is that his bullshit ain’t from his own bulls.

      2. But that’s not what is being questioned here. I think the question is did he refuse a prosecutable case and for what reasons? I know someone who was prosecuted and convicted of rape with less evidence than this. (Oh, and Colorado has a rape shield law which makes it VERY hard to “blame the victim” during trial. In the case I am familiar with, the judge refused to allow any evidence of the victim’s behavior that very night even as rebuttal evidence when the judge allowed the prosecutor to portray the victim as a saint.)

        From my perspective, this looks like a case that should never have gone to a jury because Buck could have leveraged the evidence into a strong plea deal. Juries have the right to weigh evidence and testimony but they can’t close their eyes to the law. The three slam dunk elements to this case:

        1. Everyone stipulates that a sex act occurred.

        2. The suspect actually acknowledged that she told him to stop.

        3. Even if no one remembered her saying stop, the fact that everyone stipulates that she was intoxicated renders that issue moot. Under Colorado law, a person who is intoxicated is incapable of giving consent to sex.

        So, whether she invited him over, had previous sexual relations with him, or even pulled down his pants are all completely irrelevant to the application of Colorado law. At the very least, Buck could have said, “You admitted that she said “stop” and she was drunk and you admitted that you had sex. So, what we have is a confession. Here’s the plea deal.”

        Instead, he tried to shame the victim.

        What I don’t get is “Why?” Why did he refuse to tally up another notch on his prosecutorial gun handle? Ironically, it might be because he prejudged her for having an abortion. Even more ironically, he may not realize that, when a woman has a D&C after a miscarriage, it is procedurally labeled “abortion.”

    1. more nuanced take on the entire story than here on CPols over the past 2 days.

      Note that Bennet’s spokesman indicated they don’t intend to use the story in their campaign ads…..

        1. In any event, it’s extremely unlikely to have the same Terminator effect on Buck’s candidacy that McInnis’ plagiarism had on his.

          And, thus far, it doesn’t have legs in major Colorado media.

  8. But this is really looking awful.

    Maybe this truly didn’t make sense to prosecute, but it sure doesn’t look that way. Even if the recording wasn’t admissible, it sure should have been a giant vote in favor of going to court and trying to get a conviction.

    And if the victim’s considering an abortion influenced the decision, that is a gigantic miscarriage of justice. The law is not to protect only those we who live their life the way we think they should.

    I think Ken Buck owes the voters a detailed answer to this before asking for their votes.

    1. exactly.  

      What more would need to happen, other than the guy running into Bucks office screaming “I did it, prosecute me ! ”

      I mean really. Big WTF here.

      1. We only have Ken Buck’s word that he ran it past the Boulder DA’s office, and that word only recently in response to the Independent article, according to the conservative attack response National Review article you linked.

        We’ll see what today’s Independent installment brings; perhaps they’ll be talking to the Boulder DA’s office to confirm exactly what they were sent to review (if anything), and what they said about it.  Or perhaps there’s something else to this story.

        Most of us who’ve been on this blog for a while I think know that the Independent, which does some fine investigative journalism, sides with the truth in having a well-known liberal bias.  That doesn’t invalidate the story and the questions: why does Ken Buck say such denigrating things to and about the alleged victim of a rape, why does he fail to prosecute when the suspect admits his wrongdoing twice on the record, why does he appear to believe the suspect over the victim re: the miscarriage/abortion issue, and why would this affect the case?

      2. So in response to Progress Now’s partisan attack, you respond with the National Review’s partisan counter-attack? Pretty weak! I can’t believe that’s the best you can come up with.

        Maybe post the link a few hundred times and see if it gets any less partisan.

  9.  How is this not what it plainly appears to be, folks?

    What, exactly and specifically, does CPols feels this ‘plainly appears to be’?

    Believe I know what you’re implying. But why not just lay it out there in b&w?

    I for one would love to see this little gem implode Buck’s candidacy a la Scottie’s plagiarism scandal during the GOP Gub primary……..

    But don’t feel the story has been sufficiently developed yet for it to resonate beyond Dem base voters. And too it’s awfully late in the day….

  10. Other prosecutors came to Buck’s defense as the “buyer’s remorse” story spread.

    Ted Tow, a former Adams County prosecutor who now leads the Colorado District Attorneys’ Council, said prosecutors have no choice but to reject cases they deem weak.

    “Anyone who’s ever prosecuted sexual assault cases has had something like this come up,” Tow said. “The bottom line is, we’re in the proving business, not in the knowing business.”

    1. Yeah, because you’ve just been a gigantic ray of sunshine with every post. You couldn’t have been kinder to the Democratic men and women you’ve ever posted about on Pols.

      1. H-Shill can’t comment on how swell his guy is doing at the polls so he has been instructed to avoid this story altogether.

        Nothing says shill like going silent to avoid having to defend the inexcusable.

    1. I’m sure my post above will get me labeled as a Buck shill by some mad partisan.  Of course, it won’t matter than I spent the afternoon phone banking for Bennet.  We Buck shills are sooooo sneaky;-)

       Seriously, so far, I’m sticking with my bottled in bond, board-certified, Sterling silver, list of 1,432 reasons to vote against Buck.  I can’t buy this as reason 1,433 yet.

      1. If someone like yourself is willing to defend Buck on this, why not the people who come here day in day out and post only on the subject of the US Senate race, and the extreme awesomeness of Ken Buck?

  11. Kjersten Forseth of ProgressNow Colorado discusses Ken Buck’s record and a 2005 rape case he refused to prosecute with MSNBC’s Ed Schultz, 12 October 2010.


    This will give you the Colorado Court Rules, which include, among much else, the Colorado Rules of Evidence.  As I said, they generally parallel the Federal Rules of Evidence.  

    Thyis is a free , public domain, link to our state constitution, statutes, court rules, rules for civil procedure, etc.  I basically wore out my keyboard access this site to get my paralegal certification.  

      Scroll the rules at leisure and decide whether you think a call from an ex-girlfriend taped without the knowledge of the accused rapist and loaded with leading questions would be accepted as a “confession” of rape in a Colorado Court.

     I vote no, and I don’t think it was close.

    But do your own study, and reach your own conclusion.   This offer doesn’t apply to bjwilson, who can find his own damn link at  

    1. is admissible as such under the Colorado Rules of Evidence.

      Now, that’s not saying it wouldn’t be potentially very impeachable on cross-examination in the hands of a skilled advocate, but that is a separate matter.

      1. The Chief of Police of the Greeley Police Department, the Greeley Tribune, local attorneys who wrote in to the newspaper and the Boulder DA (remember who he is) all agreed with Buck’s decision not to prosecute about 5 years ago.   I am sure none of them know as much as about the proper course of action as the progress now types who are now second guessing the decision three weeks before an election.

        1. where did you get your law degree?  I got mine at CU in the 1990s–and I have been practicing criminal law ever since.  I dearly wish that the law said otherwise–because it would benefit my clients–but it doesn’t.

          I am not speculating about whether Buck’s decision was the “right” one–just noting that, contrary to the uninformed speculation of many of the commenters, this guy’s statements made over the phone during a pretext call are admissible under Colorado law.

          1. but I know enough about the law generally that only a fool would come to a conclusion on taking a case without considering among other things the credibility of the potential star witness.  Neither of us are in a position to make that judgement and almost all of the commentators on this thread have no idea what goes into that decision, let alone the particular factors in this case.

            Vote for Buck or don’t vote for Buck for any number of reasons.  That he declined to persue a case that he thought was weak should not be any reason to do either.  He certainly has a fine record of criminal prosecutions and has taken on many cases where others would fear to tread. The Angela Zepata case and the murder case against a husband where the wife’s body was never found come to mind in that regard.

            1. I think it is commendable for a DA to review a case and make a decision based on seeking justice, rather than just convictions, and that may have been what was going on here.  

              I wholeheartedly agree that, without possessing all of the facts and the totality of circumstances, none of us–even those with a background in criminal law–are in a position to second-guess the decision made on whether or not to prosecute a given case.  I do stand by my conclusion that the recorded statements made by the suspect would almost certainly be admissible in trial; but, there would be many, many other factors that would go into the decision on whether to prosecute.

              That being said, fairly or unfairly, when a DA decides to run for higher office, his or her prosecutorial record will be scrutinized under an electron microscope by oppo and the media, because that is the only record he/she has to run on.

        2. I don’t know my ass from my elbow about criminal law, so , after reading this entire thread… I gotta go with you and V on this. While I personally think Ken Buck IS a misogynyst, this issue is tissue…thin and weak.

          I have no real certainty here, only my impressions from what I read. Is he an arrogant, male-chauvinistic, turd? It looks that way.

          Could you prove that he made the decision for a reason other than the one he cited? I don’t see how.

          I will vote for Senator Bennet for many, many reasons. As with Voyageur…I don’t need another.

    1. Making that judgement is certainly something voters can evaluate.

      And the more important point that’s been made in this case is how he treated the woman involved  and whether that reveals anything useful about how he thinks about women.

      I think it does.  You want to change the subject.  

      1. Ken Buck has no record to run on other than his time as a US Attorney and Weld County DA. His tenure as USA ended under a cloud with a letter of reprimand. His term as DA includes this gem. To be fair, he also did a lot of good work, but this is politics. It isn’t always fair.

        If we’re left to evaluate him on the positions he’s taken, he has apparently changed his mind on most of them. His positions are quite malleable. So, if elected, he’ll be a reliable rubber-stamp Republican.  

        1. I posted a question around the primary election day about which other R would Buck be most like in office.

          I conclude from the way he’s campaigned – say anything and count on voters to only remember the R after his name that he’ll be most like Allard. He’ll do what the R caucus tells him it needs him to do.   I think he’s learned his lesson about saying nothing when he could say something ….dumb. (Donut hole? What donut hole?)

          They have one more debate later this month right? Most ballots will be cast by then. So the math will be whether the last minute voters will be the middle, right or far right.

          ANd comments will reflect the equation.

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