State Supreme Court sides with DA
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado
DENVER, Colorado ” The Colorado Supreme Court made a decision favorable to the prosecution Monday in Frank Alameno’s 2006 child pornography case.
Alameno lives south of New Castle. Between two separate cases he has been charged with 43 felonies including possession of child pornography, sexual assault on a child and drug possession charges plus two misdemeanor counts of cruelty to animals and obscenity.
Ninth Judicial District Attorney Martin Beeson appealed District Judge Denise Lynch’s order in March that threw out evidence relating to pornography allegedly found in Alameno’s garage and crawl space and 2.1 grams of methamphetamines allegedly found in his bathroom medicine cabinet.
Defense attorney Lawson Wills had sought to suppress any evidence obtained from Alameno’s home through two September 2006 search warrants, arguing that investigators lacked sufficient probable cause. Beeson argued that there was probable cause to search the home for child pornography, which could have been stored on a small flash drive in Alameno’s medicine cabinet. He said law enforcement isn’t required to ignore evidence found in plain sight during the course of a search for other items.
Lynch’s order said it was a stretch of the imagination to think someone would store something like a flash drive in a medicine cabinet.
The Supreme Court decided to reverse part of the order, concluding in a 15-page opinion that the “plain view” exception to search warrant requirements allows the evidence in court.
Court proceedings can continue after being held up since April for the appeal. A motions hearing is scheduled Feb. 6, and a 15-day jury trial is scheduled in April in which both cases will be tried together.
Alameno was arrested Sept. 13, 2006, in Rifle after family members reported that they thought he may have child pornography and drugs. They told police they planned an intervention but decided it was “too big for them” and wanted help.
Investigators said they found numerous images including child pornography and bestiality in Alameno’s home and on a computer hidden in a wood pile behind his house. They said Internet chats describe Alameno giving pharmaceuticals to children and broadcasting inappropriate photos of them on the Internet while they slept. But Wills said the chats were about a fantasy that didn’t actually occur.
Alameno was arrested again after a March 2007 court hearing and accused of six felonies claiming he had inappropriate contact with girls aged 10 and 13 while riding ATVs at his property in the summer of 2006.
Contact Pete Fowler: 384-9121
Post Independent, Glenwood Springs Colorado CO
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