A judge has cleared the district attorney’s office of any “outrageous governmental conduct” in connection to a Mancos sexual assault case.
Accused of drugging and pimping the mother of his child, Christopher Collins, 34, of Mancos filed allegations of his own against prosecutors. Public defender Katherine Whitney argued the charges against her client should be dismissed; citing District Attorney Will Furse was negligent. Whitney claimed her client was held for 35 days without a preliminary hearing as required by law.
“The district attorney filed charges that he knew he couldn’t prove,” said Whitney. “He took my client’s liberty.”
The alleged crimes occurred in April, and charges were filed in May. Court records show initial charges were dismissed upon a recommendation from prosecutors on June 24. Furse filed six amended charges the same day. A June 25 preliminary hearing was subsequently continued until July 16.
Furse argued that Whitney failed to provide any evidence he acted with outrageous conduct that would pass the legal “shock the conscious” test.
“These are baseless accusations,” Furse said.
District Court Judge Todd Plewe agreed, citing prosecutors could dismiss and re-file amended charges prior to a preliminary hearing.
“There’s no grounds for the court to dismiss the charges based on governmental misconduct,” said Plewe.
Whitney also requested that her client’s $100,000 bond be reduced to $25,000, citing “credibility concerns of the alleged victim.”
Furse argued against a bond reduction, stating the defendant violently raped the 31-year-old alleged victim without her consent. Charged with multiple counts of sexual assault, Furse added three protection order violations were also pending against the suspect.
“Mr. Collins has systematically terrorized the victim,” said Furse.
Plewe sided with prosecutors, maintaining the current bond.
According to court records, the mother of the alleged victim told police that the defendant drugged her daughter, then had sex and allowed others to have sex in exchange for money while her daughter was unconscious.
Collins has pleaded not guilty to all charges. A trial, expected to last up to two weeks, is set to start Jan. 20.