Notable Cases

Some of our firm's memorable civil and criminal cases

Cases - Joaquin G. Padilla

Joaquin has obtained many jury and trial court verdicts in favor of his civil clients (plaintiffs and defendants) resulting in substantial damages awards, including awards for attorneys’ fees and costs for his clients. For those of his clients that have been sued, Joaquin has obtained numerous defense verdicts, resulting in substantial savings for those clients.

Joaquin has also negotiated many settlements on behalf of his clients resulting in sizable recoveries of monies by the clients for their claims. Joaquin has also negotiated many settlements on behalf of his clients that are sued resulting in significant savings for his clients.

Some named parties have been removed or abbreviated to protect identities.

Civil Cases

Some of Joaquin G. Padilla’s memorable civil cases include the following:

T.M. v. A.M., et al., Broomfield District Court (2021-2022)

In this multi-party construction defect civil action, in which the plaintiff claimed over $1,007,000.00 in damages, Joaquin obtained a dismissal with prejudice of all claims against his client.

B.R.C. v. C.M., et al., Denver District Court (2017-2019)

In this multi-party commercial litigation case, in which the project owner claimed over $1,000,000.00 in damages, Joaquin obtained a dismissal with prejudice of all claims against his client.

Kerner et al. v. The City and County of Denver, United States District Court for the District of Colorado (2011-2018)

In this class action civil rights employment law case tried over the course of seven years before the United States District Court for the District of Colorado and the United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit, Joaquin and Kenneth Padilla successfully represented class representatives and over 900 putative plaintiffs/class members against the City and County of Denver at trial for the city’s violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. § 2000e, et. seq., as amended. Joaquin and Ken obtained a verdict in favor of their clients and against the City and County of Denver in the amount of $2,701,126.99, which included a damages award, attorneys’ fees, and costs.

Hall-Irwin Corporation v. Moore Electrical Enterprises, Inc., et al., Denver District Court(2009-2010)

In this commercial litigation case, Joaquin successfully defended his clients (the defendants) at trial from claims for breach of contract, fraud, and misrepresentation arising from construction at a residential development project. Not only did Joaquin obtain a defense verdict for his clients, he also obtained a judgment for damages and interest in the clients’ favor and against the general contractor plaintiff based upon Joaquin’s clients’ counterclaims, and he obtained an award of his clients’ attorneys’ fees and costs as the prevailing parties.

West v. Roberts, 143 P.3d 1037 (Colo. 2006)

In this civil action involving application of the Uniform Commercial Code and Colorado’s rights in stolen property statute (also known as the civil theft statute), Joaquin obtained a judgment in his client’s favor at trial, winning at all stages of the case before the state trial and appellate courts. The argument Joaquin advanced in this case established new law in Colorado, in which Joaquin successfully argued the case before the Colorado Supreme Court resulting in the decision being published.

Hansen v. Barron’s Oilfield Service, Inc., et al., 429 P.3d 101 (Colo. App. 2018)

Martha Ulmer v. Barron’s Oilfield Service, Inc., et al.

In these separate wrongful death cases arising from the same event, Joaquin successfully represented his clients (the defendants) over the course of four years before the state trial courts and Colorado Court of Appeals, obtaining a defense verdict in favor of his corporate client and against plaintiff Hansen. Joaquin also obtained an award for his attorneys’ fees and costs incurred in favor of his client and judgment was entered against plaintiff Hansen. In addition, the argument Joaquin advanced in the case established new law involving Colorado’s Wrongful Death Act, culminating in the decision being published.

C.M. v. Powell et al. in their individual capacities, and other youth corrections personnel of the State of Colorado Department of Human Services - Division of Youth Corrections Mount View Youth Services Center and the Lookout Mountain Youth Services Center, United States District Court for the District of Colorado (2016-2017)

Joaquin successfully represented his client who was attacked, beaten, and assaulted by youth corrections personnel while in the care and custody of the State of Colorado Department of Human Services - Division of Youth Corrections Mount View Youth Services Center and the Lookout Mountain Youth Services Center, and retaliated against after making reports of the assaults, in violation of his constitutional rights under the First, Eighth and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution. Joaquin brought a lawsuit on behalf of his client pursuant to 42 U.S.C. §§ 1983, 1985 and 1988 for the deprivation of the client’s civil rights. Joaquin successfully negotiated a six-figure settlement of his client’s claims.

Criminal Cases

Joaquin has obtained not guilty verdicts for his clients at trial and he has obtained dismissals of charges brought against his clients prior to trial in many of his criminal law cases. Joaquin has also successfully negotiated lesser charges and reduced sentences for his clients in other cases. Below are just several examples of Joaquin’s notable criminal law cases:

People of the State of Colorado v. A.L., Denver County Court (2018-2019)

Joaquin successfully defended his client who was charged with multiple offenses, including but not limited to, assault with a deadly weapon (vehicle) and assault. Joaquin’s client was acquitted at trial by the jury of all charges.

People of the State of Colorado v. T.M. (2015)

Joaquin successfully defended his client at trial, who was charged with multiple offenses including assault, with a domestic violence component, by obtaining a not guilty jury verdict on all counts, resulting in the complete exoneration of the client.

People of the State of Colorado v. Defendant, Arapahoe County District Court (2015-2016)

Joaquin was lead counsel in this complex criminal law case in which his client was charged with over twenty-one counts of sexual assault and attempted sexual assault and was facing a sentence of over 80 years in prison. Joaquin successfully represented his client in two lengthy trials over the course of two years, demonstrating his client’s innocence to the jury and obtaining not guilty jury verdicts on all counts, resulting in the complete vindication for his client.

People of the State of Colorado v. J.G., Denver District Court (2001)

Joaquin successfully defended this client charged with multiple counts of possession of drugs and possession with intent to distribute drugs by obtaining a complete dismissal of all charges prior to trial.

Domestic Relations Cases

Some of Joaquin G. Padilla’s memorable domestic relations cases include the following:

In Re: Petitioner E.M., Jefferson County District Court (2021-2022)

Joaquin successfully represented this client by obtaining final decision-making authority for his client with respect to the child, child’s primary residence with client, a substantial child support award in the amount of $2,200.00 per month for one child, and supervised parenting time for the other parent on a graduated plan.

In Re: Petitioner A.S., Douglas County District Court (2012-2013)

Joaquin successfully represented this client by obtaining decision making for his client, a substantial child support award in the amount of $3,000.00 per month for one child, establishment of a college education account with substantial payment (six figure) toward the same, shared payment for nanny expenses, securing life insurance to guarantee the aforementioned payments, and payment of all of his client’s attorneys’ fees and costs incurred in the case.

Cases - Kenneth A. Padilla

Some of Kenneth A. Padilla's memorable cases include the following:

Frank Lobato v Ranjan Ford, et. al and the City and County of Denver

Civil Action No 05-cv-01437-LTB-CBS

In an unrelated search for a domestic violence suspect, Denver Police officer Ranjan Ford used a ladder to illegally enter into the second story bedroom of an innocent elderly man, Frank Lobato in the Lincoln Park Housing Projects. Mr. Lobato was awakened suddenly upon DPD officer Ford pushing open his bedroom door and was immediately shot to death. Officer Ford falsely claimed that Mr. Lobato had a gun in his hand; however, it was determined that Mr. Lobato may have fallen asleep with a can of soda in his hand. Denver City Council approved a $900,000 settlement for Lobato’s wife and adult children.

Rebecca Norris v City and County of Denver

Civil Action No. 1:20-cv-01226-DDD-SKC

Veteran Denver County Court clerk Rebecca Norris had served as a courtroom clerk for thirteen years and was twice awarded the Outstanding Clerk of the Year during her employment.

During a recess a senior Denver Court Judge came to Ms. Norris’ courtroom claiming he was looking for the presiding judge. While Ms. Norris was working alone at her desk, the visiting judge sat beside Ms. Norris and began an inappropriate, sexually explicit conversation with her and then fondled her and kissed her without her consent. Ms. Norris yelled at the judge to leave the courtroom and he ran out of the courtroom’s back door and back to his own courtroom in another court building, two blocks away.

When Ms. Norris came forward with a complaint of sexual assault by a Denver County Court Judge, her supervisors failed to pursue any action against the judge, and she was fired.

Upon investigation, it was found that this senior judge had engaged in sexual harassment at Denver County Court for years by asking other young female clerks and employees of the court for their phone numbers on pretext that it was for work. He would also harass these women at their workstations. The harassed women would try to avoid unwanted sexual advances by hiding in the women’s restroom or pretending they were on phone calls in an effort to protect themselves from this senior judge.

People v Anthony Quintana

Denver District Court and Denver Federal Court

Mr. Quintana was accused of plotting to use dynamite to blow up the Denver Police Department during a national meeting of the Chiefs of Police. All charges were dismissed against him.

People v Gary Garrison

Denver District Court and Ft Morgan District Court

Due to the high-profile status of this case, the case was moved from Denver District Court to the District Court of Ft. Morgan in Eastern Colorado. In this case, Mr. Garrison was accused of numerous felonies alleging that he threw a Molotov cocktail into a business having a dispute with a Denver civil rights organization.

Although a jury acquitted Mr. Garrison on numerous felony charges, his attorney, Mr. Kenneth A. Padilla, Esq. endured disparagement motivated by race and politics. During the investigation of this case, an employee of the Denver District Attorney’s office who was also Governor Roy Romer’s son, used a photo lineup for a witness to identify the person who committed the crime. Mr. Romer’s son surreptitiously and purposefully used a photograph of a person with a criminal record with the same name as Kenneth Padilla who he thought was attorney Kenneth Padilla, apparently hoping the witness would identify him to sully the reputation of Kenneth A. Padilla, Esq.

Anthony Waller v Brady Lovingier and the City and County of Denver

Civil Action No. 14-cv-02109-WYD-NYW

When Mr. Waller appeared in Denver County Court to be advised of his rights in an unrelated case, he asked the judge a question which she was answering when without any provocation, Denver Deputy Sheriff Lovingier, rammed Mr. Waller’s head into a metal post inside the courtroom and was dragged bleeding from the courtroom by Sheriff Lovingier. During this vicious, unprovoked attack, Mr. Waller was shackled with his hands and feet attached to a chain around his stomach. Mr. Waller could only shuffle a few inches at a time and was defenseless in this unwarranted attack. The Denver County Court Judge was a witness on Mr. Waller’s behalf in his Federal civil rights 42 USC §1983 trial testifying that Mr. Waller had not acted improperly in any way and was politely asking a legitimate question, which was his right when Deputy Sheriff Lovingier savagely assaulted Mr. Waller. The jury awarded Mr. Waller damages, attorney’s fees, and costs.

People v Ernesto Vigil

Denver District Court

Denver Chicano teacher and activist with the Crusade for Justice and author of The Crusade for Justice: Chicano Militancy and the Government's War on Dissent, was accused of shooting a Denver Police officer during the police attack and bombing of the Crusade for Justice teacher’s apartment complex on March 17, 1973. He was acquitted in record time of just 3 minutes of jury deliberation.

People v Agumaro Guerrero

Denver District Court

Jury verdict, not guilty of a drive by shooting while on a bicycle. Attorney Padilla successfully obtained cell phone records from a nearby cell tower proving that the Defendant, Mr. Guerrero was using his phone at the time of the shooting, while riding his bike rendering it impossible to ride his bike, use his phone, and shoot a gun at the alleged victim all at the same time.

USA v Frank Eugenio Martinez

United States District Court for the District of Colorado

In this highly publicized and highly political case, Mr. Martinez was charged with a seven-count indictment for mailing three separate bombs through the United States Postal Service. Martinez was a young Chicano activist and civil rights attorney. The case received immense publicity and was severed into three separate trials for each of the alleged mail bombs and the trial moved from Denver to Pueblo, Colorado.

The first federal trial ended in a mistrial. The trial judge, Chief Judge Fred M. Winner, and the U.S. Attorneys, along with court personnel, plus FBI and U.S. Marshal agents, and Denver police officers who were witnesses in the case secretly met in Chief Judge Winner’s hotel room at his behest.

The purpose of this secret meeting was to grant a mistrial because Judge Winner feared that Mr. Martinez would be found not guilty, thus if a mistrial was granted the U.S. attorneys could be better prepared for the next trial. Judge Winner also asked the FBI and U.S. Marshal’s Service to place listening devices at defense counsel’s table to covertly listen to attorney-client conversations and learn the defense strategy of the case in order for the prosecution to be better prepared to ensure a conviction at the planned re-trial.

Once this prosecutorial misconduct came to light, Judge John Kane of Denver District Court attempted to cover up Chief Judge Winner’s obvious criminal conduct of obstruction of justice, by denying the defense an evidentiary hearing, where the defense could call Judge Winner and others as witnesses. Finally, after lengthy appeals, the entire 10th Circuit Court of Appeals recused themselves because all the judges of the United States Denver District Court and the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals knew that Chief Judge Winner obstructed justice in his secret meeting with the U.S. Attorney’s office. The case was sent to the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals in St. Louis, Missouri. Nearly a year later, Mr. Martinez finally had his evidentiary hearing, calling Judge Winner, U.S. attorneys and other court personnel as witnesses and learned all the details of the secret meeting between Chief Judge Winner and the U.S. Attorneys in their effort to obstruct justice.

The first bombing case was dismissed for gross prosecutorial and judicial misconduct. In the second trial, the defense was allowed individual voir dire of the potential jury panel due to the widespread and blatant prejudicial pretrial publicity. After a three-week jury trial, presided by Kansas Judge Frank G. Theis, of Karen Silkwood fame, Mr. Martinez was found not guilty. The third bombing case was dismissed by the U.S. Attorney’s office. Similar state charges in Colorado were also dismissed. Mr. Martinez was able to return to his home in Alamosa, Colorado and to resume his career as a lawyer.

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