Tenth Judicial District — Pueblo County

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Pueblo County Judicial Building

320 West 10th Street

Pueblo, Colorado 81003

Telephone: (719) 583-7125 — Main Number

Facsimile: (719) 583-7126


 
The 10th Judicial District has, and does have some of the worst judges in the state. Judges Haynes and Mattoon are examples of how dysfunctional the judicial retention system is.

In 2012 the Equal Justice Foundation began a rating system of justices standing for retention based on the votes of attorneys who submit responses to surveys sent to them by the Judicial Performance Review Commission. The idea was first put forward by the Rocky Mountain News in an October 13, 2002, editorial. Whether a “Retain” or “Do Not Retain” is recommended is based on the criteria:

Retain: More than 85% of attorneys voted to retain;

Marginal: in 2012 the standard was that only 80-85% of attorneys voted to retain. In 2014 review this was broadened to 75-85% and in 2018 the standard was expanded again to 71-85% of attorneys voted to retain;

Do Not Retain: In 2012 the standard was less than 80% of attorneys voted to retain. In 2014 review this was changed to <75% of attorneys voted to retain and in 2018 this was lowered even further to less than or equal <=70% suggesting judicial standards continue to decline.


 
    Table 25: Tenth Judicial District Judges and Magistrates

Name of Judge

Telephone

Case Links

Comments

 

District Judges

William Alexander

Division 504

(719) 404-8711

 

Appointed district court judge by Gov. Hickenlooper in April 2012. Municipal court judge in Pueblo prior to that.

Stood for retention in 2014.

EJF recommendation: Marginal

84% of attorneys voted to Retain and 9% voted Do Not Retain.

David A. Cole

 

No longer on bench as of September 2012.

David W. Crockenberg

Division 404

(719) 404-8873

 

Appointed district court judge in Dec. 2002.

Stood for retention in 2006. 97% Retain.

Stood for retention in 2012.

EJF recommendation: Retain

92% of attorneys voted to retain while only 8% voted Do Not Retain.

Scott Epstein

 

No longer on bench as of February 2007.

Allison P. Ernst

Division 404

(719) 404-8838

 

Appointed district court judge by Gov. Hickenlooper in November 2016. Prior to that she was in private practice.

Deborah Eyler

Chief Judge

Division 502

(719) 404-8970

 

Appointed district court judge in December 2008.

Stood for retention in 2012.

EJF recommendation: 90% Retain

Stood for retention again in 2018.

EJF recommendation: Marginal

This time only 84% of attorneys voted to Retain and 16% voted Do Not Retain.

Not very high marks for a chief judge.

Thomas Flesher

Division 503

(719) 404-8740

 

Appointed district court judge by Gov. Ritter in March 2008. Former public defender.

Stood for retention in 2010. Attorney ratings not given.

Stood for retention again in 2016.

EJF recommendation: Retain

94% of attorneys voted to Retain with only 6% voting Do Not Retain

Kim Karn

Division 403

(719) 404-8873

 

Appointed district judge by Gov. Hickenlooper in August 2014. Prior to the she was a public defender.

Stood for retention in 2018.

EJF recommendation: Retain

93% of attorneys voted to Retain and only 7% voted Do Not Retain.

C. Dennis Maes

 

No longer on bench as of September 2012.

Jill S. Mattoon

 

Only CO judge not recommended for retention in 2010.

 

An example of the flaws in the judicial retention system.

(719) 404-8890

 

Appointed district court judge in November 2006. Replaced Scott B. Epstein

Stood for retention in 2010. Do Not Retain. Attorney rating not given but commission stated that it does not appear that she is willing to acknowledge her weaknesses or, if she has the ability to do so, to expend any effort to improve her performance.

Retained by voters.

Stood for retention again in 2016

EJF recommendation: Do Not Retain

72% of attorneys voted Retain but 22% voted Do Not Retain. Incredibly, only 48% of the non-attorneys voted to Retain.

Victor Reyes

 

Retired December 31, 2014.

 

Appointed district judge in August 1998.

Stood for retention in 2002. Pathetic 63% of attorneys voted to retain.

Stood for retention in 2008. Very weak 78% of attorneys voted to retain.

Larry Charles Schwartz

Division 406

(719) 404--8821

 

Appointed district court judge in July 2008.

Stood for retention in 2010. Not rated.

Stood for retention in 2016.

EJF recommendation: Marginal

Just 78% of attorneys voted to Retain and 12% voted Do Not Retain.

Rosalie Vigna

 

No longer on bench as of July 2009

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County Judges

Adele K. Anderson

 

Commission stated she is demeaning and treats individuals appearing in her court without legal counsel harshly.

 

No longer on bench as of September 2012. She won't be missed!

 

Not recommended for retention in 2000 survey. Only 32% of attorneys recommended she be retained. That was the worst evaluation the EJF was aware of prior to 2014.

In 2004 review she was found to deal with defendants and plaintiffs in a manner described as being curt to the point of being rude. Her treatment of defendants from lower socio-economic backgrounds has been perceived as demeaning and lacking compassion.

Steven B. Fieldman

Division 304

(719) 404-8958

 

Appointed county court judge in January 2008.

Stood for retention in 2010. 84% Retain.

Commission voted 8-2 he be retained with an improvement plan.

Stood for retention in 2014.

EJF recommendation: 84% Marginal

Stood for retention again in 2018.

EJF recommendation: Retain

This time 97% of attorneys voted to Retain and only 3% voted Do Not Retain. Quite an improvement!

Valerie V. Haynes

 

She was given the worst rating the EJF has seen.

 

She is described as rude, curt, has little compassion, and inappropriately raises her voice.

 

Resigned in August 2018 rather than standing for retention again. Not soon enough for the poor souls who appeared before her.

 

Appointed by Gov. Hickenlooper in 2011. Replaced Hearn. Prior experience as deputy DA in 4 th , 10 th , and 13 th Judicial Districts.

Stood for retention in 2014.

EJF recommendation: Do Not Retain

Incredibly, only 11% of attorneys voted to Retain while 74% voted Do Not Retain. The commission unanimously voted to oust her and reported she imposes requirements that have no basis in rule or law.

Kathleen K. Hearn

Pueblo County

 

Retired in May 2011.

 

Appointed county court judge in December 1995.

Stood for retention in 1998. 86% Retain.

Stood for retention in 2002. Very weak 70+% of attorneys recommended she be retained.

Stood for retention in 2006. 97% Retain.

Stood for retention in 2010. 87% Retain.

David Lobato

Division 303

(719) 404-8744

 

Appointed county court judge in February 2012. Former public defender.

Stood for retention in 2014.

EJF recommendation: 94% Retain

Stood for retention again in 2018.

EJF recommendation: Retain

His rating dropped a bit with only 87% of attorneys voting to Retain and 7% voting Do Not Retain.

Ernest J. Ruybalid (Atty)

 

No longer on bench as of September 2012. Thank heaven!

 

Performance is substandard and the judicial review commission issued a neutral No Opinion in 2000 survey.

Stood for retention in 2004. Retain! Why?

In 2004 review Commission stressed recurring issues and some of those issues gathered from the surveys and interviews were as follows:

1. Has limited knowledge of the law, and sentencing practices are not consistent.

2. Lacks technological skills hindering him in his capacity as a County Judge.

3. Does not interact with the staff and does not help with the workload.

4. Orders are not well thought out and he takes positions that do not make sense.

5. Overall evaluations are below the rest of the Colorado County Judges.

 

 

Stood for retention in 2008. A pitiful 70% of attorneys recommended he be retained.

Took 33 days paid leave in addition to holidays.

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Magistrates

Joyce Cohen

 

No longer on the bench as of October 2018.

Deborah Eyler

 

Promoted to District Court Judge in December 2008.

Rebecca Moss

 

No longer on bench as of July 2009 j

Dorothy Radakovich

Division 402

(719) 404-8818

 

 

Clinton A. Smith

 

No longer on bench as of September 2016.

Gregory Styduhar

Division 305

(719) 404-8822

 

 

Kelle Thomas

Division 302

(719) 404-8882

 

 

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This site is supported and maintained by the Equal Justice Foundation.

Last modified 10/15/18.