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Understanding The Colorado Identity Theft Law |18-5-902

By H. Michael Steinberg Colorado Theft Crimes Criminal Defense Lawyer – Attorney

Understanding The Colorado Identity Theft Law |18-5-902.

Understanding The Colorado Identity Theft Law |18-5-902 – Identity theft can be a complex crime to prove under Colorado Law. To understand the crime – you begin with what it is intended to punish – using someone else’s identity to gain a benefit.

In another article I recently drafted – we looked at the Colorado case of People v. Perez. That case held that in order to prove identity theft, the People must show that the defendant knowingly used the identifying information of another person.

The Simple Elements Of Colorado’s Identity Theft Law – 18-5-902

To convict a defendant of identity theft, the People must show that the defendant knew the information belonged to another person.

Under Section 18-5-902(1)(a), C.R.S., a person commits identity theft if he or she:

“[k]nowingly uses the personal identifying information, financial identifying information, or financial device of another without permission or lawful authority with the intent to obtain cash, credit, property, services, or any other thing of value or to make a financial payment . . . .”

Here is a break out of the elements as used in the Colorado Jury Instruction for this crime that may help with clarity:

IDENTITY THEFT – Colorado

The elements of the crime of identity theft (use) are:

1. That the defendant,

2. in the State of Colorado, at or about the date and place charged,

3. knowingly,

4. used the personal identifying information, financial identifying information, or financial device of another,

5. without permission or lawful authority, and

6. with the intent,

7. to obtain cash, credit, property, services, or any other thing of value or to make a financial payment.

[8. and that the defendant’s conduct was not legally authorized by the affirmative defense[s] in Instruction[s] ___.]

Importantly, the “culpable mental state” of this law  – KNOWINGLY – APPLIES TO EVERT ELEMENT OF THE OFFENSE. That means the State must prove that the Accused knew they were committing all of the other elements of the crime of Identity Theft.

Certain terms used in this law and in every criminal charge are of critical importance. One of those terms is the use of the thing of value.”— The definition of “thing of value” is taken from another Colorado law – section 18-1-901(1)(r) as it applies to section 18-5-902(1)(a).

Section 18-1-901(1)(r) defines “thing of value” very broadly as:

“real property, tangible and intangible personal property, contract rights, choses in action, services, confidential information, medical records information, and any rights of use or enjoyment connected therewith.”

The Colorado Bureau of Investigation Identifies MANY Types Of Identity Theft

Identity Theft: All forms of Identity Theft involve using personal identifying information. To understand the scope of ID Theft, we talk about it in terms of the following types of ID Theft.

Financial Identity Theft: What most people think of first when thinking of ID Theft. Defined as any form of ID Theft that accesses a person’s financial resources or credit.

Medical Identity Theft: The use of another person’s identifying information to obtain medical services, prescriptions or any other medical, psychiatric or substance abuse treatment.

Employment/Benefits Identity Theft: The use of someone’s social security number to obtain employment, to claim public or veterans benefits or to apply for unemployment benefits.

Criminal Identity Theft: This form of ID Theft occurs when someone uses another person’s ID when charges with a crime, arrested or given a traffic ticket.

Child Identity Theft/At-Risk Adult Identity Theft: Any form of Identity Theft that is perpetrated using the ID of a minor child or of an older adult or person with a disability.

Domestic Violence/Stalking ID Theft: Any ID Theft that is committed as part of a domestic violence or stalking incident. This form of ID Theft is often used by the perpetrator to intimidate and control the victim.

Tax Related Identity Theft: The use of someone’s social security number to file fraudulent tax returns and obtain fraudulent tax refunds.

Business Identity Theft: The theft of a business by changing listings with the Secretary of State. This form of ID Theft is committed to obtain credit, sell the business or set up fraudulent websites to divert business and online payments or to obtain personal information from customers.

Understanding The Colorado Identity Theft Law |18-5-902

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The reader is admonished that Colorado criminal law, like criminal law in every state and at the Federal level, changes constantly. The article appearing above was accurate at the time it was drafted but it cannot account for changes occurring after it was uploaded.

If, after reading this article, you have questions about your case and would like to consider retaining our law firm, we invite you to contact us at the Steinberg Colorado Criminal Defense Law Firm – 303-627-7777.

Never stop fighting – never stop believing in yourself and your right to due process of law. You will not be alone in court, H. Michael will be at your side every step of the way – advocating for justice and the best possible result in your case. H. Michael Steinberg is passionate about criminal defense. His extensive knowledge and experience of Colorado Criminal Law gives him the edge you need to properly handle your case

H. Michael Steinberg Best Colorado Criminal Defense Lawyer FINAL Email The Author at mailto:hmsteinberg@hotmail.com– A Denver Colorado Criminal Defense Lawyer – or call his office at 303-627-7777 during business hours – or call his cell if you cannot wait and need his immediate assistance – please call 720-220-2277.

“A good criminal defense lawyer is someone who devotes themselves to their client’s case from beginning to end, always realizing that this case is the most important thing in that client’s life.”

You should be careful to make a responsible choice in selecting a Colorado Criminal Defense Lawyer. We encourage you to “vet” our firm. Over the last 30 plus years – by focusing ONLY on Colorado criminal law – H. Michael has had the necessary time to commit to the task of constantly updating himself on nearly every area of criminal law, to include Colorado criminal law and procedure and trial and courtroom practice. H. Michael works hard to get his clients the best possible results in and out of the courtroom. He has written, and continues to write, extensively on Colorado criminal law and he hopes this article helps you in some small way – Understanding The Colorado Identity Theft Law |18-5-902.

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Understanding The Colorado Identity Theft Law |18-5-902.
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Identity theft can be a complex crime to prove under Colorado Law. To understand the crime - you begin with what it is intended to punish - using someone else’s identity to gain a benefit.
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___________________________
H. Michael Steinberg Esq.
Attorney and Counselor at Law
The Colorado Criminal Defense Law Firm of H. Michael Steinberg
A Denver, Colorado Lawyer Focused Exclusively On
Colorado Criminal Law For Over 30 Years.
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