BOULDER, Colo. (CBS4) – The Boulder County district attorney says a lawyer found guilty of taking thousands of dollars from vulnerable people is doing everything she can to avoid going to prison.
Emily Cohen didn’t show up to another sentencing hearing on Monday. CBS4 learned she had checked herself into rehab at a medical facility for a second time. She was discharged from one on Saturday, and then Monday morning she checked herself in again.
“We just need to get her in court and in front of the judge and she can be sentenced at that time,” District Attorney Stan Garnett said.
Cohen has known her sentence was coming since being convicted on 13 counts of felony theft in December.
“You’re dealing with people that are very vulnerable, that need the protection of the courts,” Garnett said.
During the investigation more than 50 people, most of them immigrants, came forward saying they had hired Cohen for work permits or visas, paid her thousands, and never got any help.
“There are a lot of parts of this case that are unusual. It’s unusual to have a lawyer charged with these kinds of crimes,” Garnett said. “The trial was a trial where we had victims testify in four different languages; it was a very complicated trial.”
The past four months have seen a variety of legal maneuvering by Cohen, including changing defense lawyers several times, and simply not showing up to her sentencing hearing.
“It’s hard for victims when there’s not closure in a case. The victims, and there’s quite a number of them in this case, have been cooperative and patient,” Garnett said.
On Monday Cohen’s current attorney tried to recuse herself from the case.
Cohen is facing six years in prison.
“I have no doubt she will be found, she will be brought to the court and she will be sentenced sometime in the next few weeks,” Garnett said.
The judge on Monday issued a warrant for Cohen’s arrest. If she’s arrested and brought back for sentencing there will have to be a competency hearing because on Friday Cohen filed a motion saying she is not mentally competent to be sentenced.