I'm including the crashing collada file in question. It's an export from Maya 2012. It's a simple piece of test geometry and a simple set of bones. I have had limited success getting bones into blender from collada, but there appears to be no rhyme or reason to what works and what doesn't. Hopefully this file will help figure things out.
Collada bugs are not being handled well so far,
for this reason they are all being set as \'TODO\' and linked from our wiki page.
This tracker item can still be updated with useful info and closed (removed from the page above) when fixed.
It looks like the app you use produces wrong .dae files. The <instance_controller> tag should contain <skeleton> tag in order to be correctly interpreted by the library Blender uses to read collada files. You can fix this by manually adding <skeleton>#[joint_id]</skeleton> under <instance_controller> (where [joint_id] should be replaced with the id of the root joint used in the skin).
Blender built at revision 44636 will not crash with the files you provided, but the mentioned manual fix is necessary to import skeletons.
I'm marking this report as fixed. Thanks for the report!