Now struck off bar, former Weld District Court judge’s misconduct described in new court documents – Greeley Tribune
Ryan Kamada, the former Weld District Court judge who pleaded guilty earlier this year to a federal felony charge for obstructing an investigation into a local drug trafficking ring, was struck off this week by the Colorado Supreme Court’s Office of Attorney Regulation Counsel.
Office procedural documents show Kamada’s misconduct was not limited to leaking details of the 2019 investigation to a friend involved. Kamada was appointed a Weld County magistrate in May 2015. During this time, he has maintained long-standing text message chains with his friends, according to court documents.
Kamada in late 2016 and early 2017 bought marijuana from a longtime friend, according to the documents. The friend referenced in the documents appears to be Geoffrey Chacon, to whom Kamada disclosed information about the 2019 investigation. Chacon shared information with others involved in the trafficking, helping investigators trace the source of the flight to Kamada.
In September 2016, Chacon asked Kamada to search for information about someone. Kamada replied to the man in question “was not convicted of sexual assault, but he was on other charges and ended up in jail (expletive)”. The text then indicated that the man in question had sex with a minor and gave her cocaine.
“Don’t say anything man,” Kamada wrote.
In December 2016, Kamada referred to a former client by name during a group chat with his friends, claiming he had conducted his custody proceedings.
“If this child lives, I will be shocked,” he wrote.
In March 2018, Kamada discussed a pending addiction and neglect case in the panel discussion. A friend asked if the relative involved had a warrant, and Kamada said he could not find one but did not seriously check, according to court documents.
The next day, the same friend sent a photo of two missing children to a newsgroup. Kamada then went on to talk about family details, including how the mother was found to be overdosed.
“When we get these kids back, I’ll let that (curse) have it,” he wrote. “This (expletive) will become forced sobriety. AKA prison.
Kamada also sent photos of his desk and case management screen three times to a group of friends, which showed case numbers, names of litigants, events and document titles. In November 2018, he repeatedly used profanity in the group’s text to refer to a lawyer who had a case of addiction and neglect before him, a case for which this lawyer was apparently not prepared.
January 8, 2019, then-government. John Hickenlooper appointed Kamada to succeed Elizabeth Strobel as judge of the Weld District Court. That same month, Chacon asked about a person arrested by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Kamada tried to search for the case, but could not find it. He assumed it was a federal case, according to court documents.
Also that month, Kamada presided over divorce proceedings and sent a photo of the front page of the dissolution decree to his friends. Kamada said he was “going to grant her today so that she will be free tomorrow night,” court documents say.
Kamada also told a friend that he had the friend’s brother-in-law in court, including a photo of a party involved in a custody battle. The photo was not the friend’s brother-in-law. Also in the same month, Kamada sent the group a photo of a father and a child, saying, “Look at the father in my trial today”.
Finally, court documents have documented Kamada’s leak of the 2019 drug trafficking investigation involving Alberto “Beto” Loya. Loya was sentenced in June to 10 years in prison after pleading guilty to conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute a controlled substance, a class 1 drug crime and conspiracy to launder money, a Class 4 felony. He initially faced 21 charges, but reached a plea deal with prosecutors.
Kamada resigned as a district court judge a day before Greeley police announced Loya’s indictment and the arrest of some of his associates. A few days later, he formed Kamada Law, LLC, in Windsor. He took a job the following month with Burnham Law. In March, according to Kamada’s LinkedIn profile, he left Burnham Law for Kamada Law.
Kamada signed an agreement consenting to the expungement and accepting the facts set out in the court documents. The deal requires him to pay $ 224 to the Colorado Supreme Court’s attorney regulatory offices for costs incurred in the case.
Kamada is free on bail until his sentencing at 2 p.m. on December 4. Court records indicate he likely faces 12 to 18 months in jail and no fines. He faces at least a year of supervised release and no more than three years.