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LaQunya Baker

Recent Posts

Discriminatory Jury Selection: Part One – Batson Challenges

Posted by LaQunya Baker on Aug 19, 2019 8:31:00 AM

True Story

I’ve been there, sitting at the Defense table during trial and the parties had just concluded voir dire, also known as jury selection. The court was preparing to swear in a newly formed jury of my client’s peers. Juror badges were being passed out. My co-counsel was getting ready to deliver opening statements, when I looked into the eyes of each juror and saw what I believed would lead to the loss of our case. My client, a white male, accused of child abuse, unwanted sexual contact, assault, and domestic violence against the mother of his children, was now sitting across from an all female jury.

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Tags: Criminal Defense Attorney

How the Colorado Criminal Justice System Fails Addicts

Posted by LaQunya Baker on Aug 18, 2019 10:46:53 AM

On September 10, 2018, Westword published a feature under the eye-catching headline: This Triple Homicide Hit Close to Home for Connie Jones. After reading what was panning out to be an emotional thrill-ride filled with loss, pain, and unsolved mysteries, the article also introduced the average reader to a storyline that many in the criminal justice system find uncomfortably common place. Nicole Boston was one of the victims of an unsolved triple homicide in Denver. Boston graduated as valedictorian of her high school class. Her mother described her as “headstrong and sassy.” But like many who are overcome by opioid addiction, Nicole’s dependency and downfall began with a valid prescription from her doctor.

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Tags: Criminal Defense Attorney

Treating a Growing Epidemic with Mass Incarceration

Posted by LaQunya Baker on Jul 29, 2019 7:55:00 AM

On September 10, 2018, Westword published a feature under the eye-catching headline: This Triple Homicide Hit Close to Home for Connie Jones. After reading what was panning out to be an emotional thrill-ride filled with loss, pain, and unsolved mysteries, the article also introduced the average reader to a story line that many in the criminal justice system find uncomfortably common place. Nicole Boston was one of the victims of an unsolved triple homicide in Denver. Boston graduated as valedictorian of her high school class. Her mother described her as “headstrong and sassy.” But like many who are overcome by opioid addiction, Nicole’s dependency and downfall began with a valid prescription from her doctor.

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Tags: Criminal Defense Attorney

Constitution's 6th Amendment Right to Counsel

Posted by LaQunya Baker on Jul 27, 2019 5:45:00 PM

When a defendant is faced with criminal charges and he’s battling the judge, the District Attorney, and what feels like the entire criminal justice system, the one person he should expect to be on his side, is his attorney. Unfortunately for Robert McCoy, he not only failed to convince a jury of his innocence at trial, he wasn’t able to convince his own attorney.

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Tags: Civil Rights Law

Racial Bias and the Criminal Justice System

Posted by LaQunya Baker on Jul 23, 2019 5:30:00 AM

“The prosecutor’s opening statement was flagrantly, glaring, and tremendously improper.” Those are the words the Colorado Court of Appeals used to describe the racially charged language a District Attorney (D.A., prosecution) used to convict Marcus Lee Robinson of attempted sexual assault and unlawful sexual conduct. Flagrant, glaring, and tremendously improper.

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Tags: Criminal Defense Attorney

Kyree Howard-Walker:  A Case of Mistaken Identity Part II

Posted by LaQunya Baker on Jul 22, 2019 8:01:00 AM

In part one of this series, we discussed Kyree’s battle with the court system over the right to a fair and impartial trial by a jury of his peers. Kyree challenged the court on allowing the District Attorney (D.A.) to dismiss every minority on the jury panel for reasons Kyree felt were merely pretext. Unfortunately for Kyree, the court allowed the D.A.’s actions during trial, and Kyree’s misidentification defense fell on deaf ears. In fact, one of the jurors dismissed by the D.A. and discussed on appeal had first hand experience with being misidentified by the police and could have possibly changed the tide for the outcome of Kyree’s trial.

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Tags: Criminal Defense Attorney

Kyree Howard-Walker: A Case of Mistaken Identity Part I

Posted by LaQunya Baker on Jul 21, 2019 3:16:09 PM

I’ve been there before. We were sitting at the Defense table during trial, and the parties had just concluded voir dire, also known as jury selection. The court was preparing to swear in our newly formed jury of my client’s peers. Juror badges were being passed out. My co-counsel was getting ready to deliver opening statements, when suddenly I looked into the eyes of each juror and saw what I believed would be the downfall of our case. My client, a white male, accused of child abuse, unwanted sexual contact, assault, and domestic violence against the mother of his children, was now sitting across from an all female jury.

Read More

Tags: Criminal Defense Attorney

How the Criminal Justice System is Failing Women

Posted by LaQunya Baker on Jul 16, 2019 6:32:00 AM

“You can judge a nation, and how successful it will be, based on how it treats its women and its girls.” – Barack Obama

Over the last four decades, there has been a rapid increase of incarcerated women in the United States. Since 1970, the number of incarcerated women skyrocketed from 8,000 to almost 110,000 by 2016.[1] On March 18, 2019, CNN reported that as of 2018, the number of women incarcerated either in local jails, state prisons, federal prison, and by the U.S. Marshals has reached an alarming 205,000.[2]       

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Tags: Criminal Defense Attorney

The People versus Race

Posted by LaQunya Baker on Jul 15, 2019 9:43:00 AM

“The prosecutor’s opening statement was flagrantly, glaring, and tremendously improper.” Those are the words the Colorado Court of Appeals used to describe the racially charged language a District Attorney (D.A., prosecution) used to convict Marcus Lee Robinson of attempted sexual assault and unlawful sexual conduct. Flagrant, glaring, and tremendously improper.

Read More

Tags: Criminal Defense Attorney, Civil Rights Law

Sixth Amendment Right to Counsel-Protecting Defendant Autonomy

Posted by LaQunya Baker on Jul 14, 2019 8:12:25 AM

When a defendant is faced with criminal charges and he’s battling the judge, the District Attorney, and what feels like the entire criminal justice system. The one person he should expect to be on his side, is his attorney. Unfortunately for Robert McCoy, he not only failed to convince a jury of his innocence at trial, he wasn’t able to convince his own attorney.

Read More

Tags: Civil Rights Law

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