to the Colorado Court of Appeals Court of Appeals Case No.
Attorneys for Petitioner: Douglas K. Wilson, Public Defender
Jason C. Middleton, Deputy Public Defender Denver, Colorado
Attorneys for Respondent: Cynthia H. Coffman, Attorney
General Nicole D. Wiggins, Assistant Attorney General Denver,
JUSTICE GABRIEL does not participate.
¶1 We address whether a conviction for unlawful sexual
contact involving an at-risk adult merges with a conviction
for sexual assault involving an at-risk adult. We conclude that
it does. Hence, we reverse the court of appeals' judgment
and remand this case to the court of appeals with
instructions to return the case to the trial court to vacate
the defendant's conviction for unlawful sexual contact.
Facts and Procedural History
Petitioner Jamey Robert Page entered the home of an
eighty-six-year-old woman late at night and sexually
assaulted her. During the assault, the victim bit Page's
tongue, causing him to bleed on her clothing. A DNA analysis
of the victim's blood-stained clothing revealed that a
mixture of DNA was present and that Page's DNA was the
source of a major component. The People charged Page with
several crimes related to the assault.
As relevant here, the jury found Page guilty of both sexual
assault involving an at-risk adult and unlawful sexual
contact involving an at-risk adult. The trial court sentenced
Page to twenty-four years to life in the custody of the
Department of Corrections on the sexual assault charge and
eighteen months concurrently on the unlawful sexual contact
¶4 Page appealed his convictions to the court of appeals
and argued, in part, that unlawful sexual contact is a lesser
included offense of sexual assault, meaning his convictions
must merge. The court of appeals disagreed, relying on
another division's decision in People v. Loyas,
259 P.3d 505 (Colo.App. 2010). People v. Page, No.
10CA0738 (Colo.App. May 2, 2013). The Loyas court
reasoned that unlawful sexual contact requires proof that the
defendant acted with a sexual purpose, while sexual assault
committed by means of penetration has no such requirement.
259 P.3d at 509- 10. The division below applied
Loyas and concluded on this basis that sexual
contact is not a lesser included offense of sexual assault
when sexual assault is committed by means of penetration and,
therefore, that Page's convictions for the offenses do
not merge. Page, slip op. at 37.
We granted certiorari to consider whether convictions for
unlawful sexual contact and sexual assault based on the same
conduct merge. We now reverse.
Standard of Review
Whether convictions for different offenses merge is a
question of law that we review de novo. E.g.,
People v. Torres, 224 P.3d 268, 275 (Colo.App.