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La Plata County Judge Anne Woods loses retention vote

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La Plata County Judge Anne Woods lost her retention vote Tuesday night. The votes to dismiss Judge Woods stood at 12,151, while the votes to retain were at 11,591.

La Plata County Clerk and Recorder Tiffany Lee said there were not enough outstanding votes to flip the outcome.

Woods appeared to be the only judge in the state of Colorado to lose her retention vote.

Woods was appointed by Gov. Jared Polis in October 2020 to serve as La Plata County judge. The 2022 election marks the first time La Plata County voters have had a choice to retain or dismiss her.

During her most recent evaluation in 2020, Woods was found to meet judicial performance standards. Fifty-three percent of the 42 attorneys surveyed said she met standards, while 34% said she did not. In contrast, 68% of non-attorneys said she met standards, while only 23% said she did not.

An earlier interim evaluation of Woods noted her tendency to weigh mitigating factors in defendant’s circumstances. And some labeled her a “pro-defense” judge, according to the evaluation. After that evaluation it was noted that she had made “significant” increases in cash bail and sentences above the minimum.

Most recently Woods’ docket has been comprised of about 25% civil, 75% criminal (50% misdemeanor and 50% traffic) cases, with 1% to 2% juvenile defendants.

Before her appointment to the bench, Woods served five years in the local Public Defender’s Office, rising to a senior deputy public defender for Montezuma and La Plata counties.

Woods could not be reached for comment.


Judge Jeffrey Wilson will retain his seat as he slides into the home stretch before the final voter tally with 18,469 votes to retain and 4,649 votes to dismiss.

Wilson was appointed to the 6th Judicial District in 2002. He was appointed chief judge of Colorado’s 6th Judicial District in 2017.

Evaluations received by Wilson during his time on the bench have showed continued improvement. During his most recent evaluation, he also was found to meet judicial performance standards. Seventy-seven percent of attorneys asked said yes he did, while 18% said no he did not. One-hundred percent of non-attorneys asked said that Wilson met performance standards. (No numbers were provided on how many attorneys or non-attorneys were asked). Six appellate judges also weighed in and gave Wilson a rating of 3.8 out of 4.

The 6th Judicial Commission wrote in Wilson’s last evaluation that he “comes across as a judge who is sincerely interested in making both his courtroom and the district better.”

Wilson is credited with handling increased administrative duties that came with being appointed chief judge, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic that had a major impact on the judicial system, and the difficulties securing a new courthouse in Archuleta County.

Judge Wilson could not be reached for comment.


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