Here are the general guidelines for evidence storage (also called exhibit retention) in the state of Colorado as published here by the Colorado Judicial Branch. Please keep in mind that it’s your responsibility to work with the judicial authority in your area to ensure that any and all evidence is approved for disposition. Do not dispose of evidence without written approval.
Exhibits in Civil, Probate, Domestic Relations, Mental Health, Juvenile (except delinquency) & Water Cases
Dispose of as per order of the court. If no applicable order exists: 35 days after the expiration of the appeal period following a final judgment in the case.
0Days After Expiration of Appeal
Defendant Found Not Guilty or Case Dismissed
Dispose of as per order of the court.
If no applicable order exists: 35 days after acquittal or dismissal.
0Years After Sentencing
Defendant Found Guilty
Upon completion of the sentence or 20 years after sentencing (whichever occurs first) or as the court may otherwise order.
Juvenile Delinquency Cases
Upon completion of the sentence or as the court may otherwise order.
Exhibits in Traffic & Misdemeanor Cases
Dispose of as per order of the court. If no applicable order exists: 35 days after appeal period has passed.
Because exhibits might need to be retained for years or even decades, it’s important to keep them well-documented, organized, and secure at every step along the way. Evidence lockers and evidence warehouse storage solutions can help secure the chain of custody and ensure that justice is served.