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Public Notice Concerning the Reappointment of Magistrate Judge Michael J. Watanabe

Friday, August 29, 2014

DENVER – The current term of office of United States Magistrate Judge Michael J. Watanabe for the U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado, Denver, Colorado, is due to expire on February 11, 2015. 

The United States District Court is required by law to establish a panel of citizens to consider the reappointment of the magistrate judge to a new eight-year term.

The duties of a magistrate judge in this court include the following: (1) conduct preliminary proceedings in criminal cases; (2) trial and disposition of misdemeanor cases; (3) conduct various pretrial matters and evidentiary proceedings on delegation from a district judge; and (4) trial and disposition of civil cases upon consent of the litigants. Effective February 3, 2014, the court began a Pilot Program that includes all full time magistrate judges in the assignment of civil cases by random draw. The Pilot Program requires the parties in cases assigned directly to a magistrate judge to indicate, through the filing of a consent form by a date certain, whether they accept or decline consent. The basic authority of a United States magistrate judge is specified in 28 U.S.C. ' 636.

Written comments from members of the bar and the public are invited as to whether the incumbent magistrate judge should be recommended by the panel for reappointment by the court.

All comments should be submitted electronically by email, or a PDF attachment to an email, to the Office of the Clerk of Court:

Comments must be received by 5:00 p.m. on October 3, 2014.