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In re Petition of Heotis

Court of Appeals of Colorado, Sixth Division

January 14, 2016

In the Matter of the Petition of Sharman Heotis, a/k/a Sharman Petersen, Petitioner-Appellant,
v.
Colorado Department of Education, Respondent-Appellee.

Boulder County District Court No. 13CV30085 Honorable Judith L. Labuda, Judge

Kris A. Gomez, Brooke M. Copass, Denver, Colorado, for Petitioner-Appellant

Cynthia H. Coffman, Attorney General, Jonathan P. Fero, Senior Assistant Attorney General, Sarah H. Pennington, Assistant Attorney General, Denver, Colorado, for Respondent-Appellee

OPINION

BERNARD JUDGE

¶ 1 A district court magistrate denied the request of petitioner, Sharman Heotis, who is also known as Sharman Petersen, to seal the record of a criminal case in which she had been the defendant. Ms. Heotis is a teacher, and respondent, the Colorado Department of Education, denied her request to renew her teaching certificate in 2014 because of the criminal case.

¶ 2 The teacher appealed the magistrate's order to the district court. The court affirmed the magistrate's order on different grounds. The teacher then filed this appeal. We dismiss it because we conclude that we do not have jurisdiction over it.

I. Background

¶ 3 In 2009, as part of a plea disposition resulting in a deferred judgment, the teacher pled guilty to a misdemeanor. She complied with all the required conditions, so, in 2011, the court allowed her to withdraw her guilty plea and dismissed the criminal case.

¶ 4 Based on the teacher's involvement in the criminal case, the Department of Education's board, in a default process, revoked her teaching license in 2011. She learned of the board's decision when she tried to renew her license in 2012. Since that time, the teacher and the Department have been engaged in a series of proceedings. The teacher wants the Department to renew her license; the Department does not want to do so.

¶ 5 In mid-January 2013, the teacher filed a petition to seal the records in the criminal case. She filed the petition in the district court, and the Department opposed her request. A magistrate presided over the hearing on the petition.

¶ 6 The magistrate ruled against the teacher. She appealed to the district court. The district court adopted the magistrate's order.

¶ 7 The teacher appealed to this court. The division issued its opinion in mid-2014. The division remanded the case "to the district court with directions to remand to the magistrate" so that the magistrate could resolve four questions. In the Matter of the Petition of Heotis, slip op. at 7 (Colo.App. No. 13CA1270, May 15, 2014)(not published pursuant to C.A.R. 35(f))(Heotis I). The division then stated that, after the magistrate had issued an order resolving those questions, "either party may petition for review by the district court, and file an appeal from the district court's order, as appropriate." Id. at 8

¶ 8 The magistrate issued a second order in September 2014. The order again denied the teacher's request to seal the records in the criminal case. She sought the district court's review. The district court modified the magistrate's order, and it also denied the teacher's request, although on different grounds.

¶ 9 The teacher appealed the district court's decision. So this is the second appeal in this case.

II. Analysis

A. Authority of Magistrates and Appeals ...


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