Colorado Rights Blog

May 29th, 2014

In Colorado, Freedom Should Mean Freedom for Everyone

ACLU of Colorado By: ACLU of Colorado (From the ACLU Blog of Rights) By Charlie Craig   It's an old tradition that a year after a couple's wedding, they eat a slice of their wedding cake. What's less traditional? Almost two years after getting married, sitting in court listening to legal debate about whether a bakery was allowed to discriminate against me and my husband because of the owner's religious beliefs. This, of course, is not a hypothetical. In July 2012, I went with my then husband-to-be Dave and.... | Read More

May 28th, 2014

Where do your legislators stand on civil liberties issues?

ACLU of Colorado By: ACLU of Colorado At the end of each legislative session, we tally the votes for 8 bills that we think best represent civil liberties issues facing Colorado today and provide a score for each Colorado State Representative and Senator. Take a look at this year's Legislative Scorecard to see whether or not your legislators were champions for civil liberties. | Read More

May 28th, 2014

Supreme Court: An IQ Point or Two Shouldn’t Determine Who Lives and Who Dies

ACLU Blog of Rights By: ACLU Blog of Rights (From the ACLU Blog of Rights) By Cassandra Stubbs, ACLU Capital Punishment Project IQ tests are intrinsically imprecise. On one, Freddie Lee Hall scored 71. On other tests, he's gotten various scores between 60 and 75. The problem for Mr. Hall is that until today, scoring over 70 on even one IQ test gave Florida the green light to execute him. That one time score of 71 put Mr. Hall just over the line in the sand drawn by the state's legislature, after the 2002 Supreme Court decision.... | Read More

May 14th, 2014

A Mother Who Won’t Be Denied Truth and Justice

ACLU of Colorado By: ACLU of Colorado In the wake of horrible tragedy, solace is often found in knowing that the truth will be sought, and justice will be delivered. For the last 15 years, Jessica Lenahan, who lost her three daughters in a domestic violence incident, has been denied the truth about what really happened to her children and, therefore, the justice that she and all victims rightly deserve. In June 1999, Rebecca, Katheryn, and Leslie Gonzales were kidnapped by their father, Simon Gonzales, and discovered dead in his vehicle.... | Read More

May 13th, 2014

Gov. signs debtors’ prison ban into law

ACLU of Colorado By: ACLU of Colorado Last Friday, Governor Hickenlooper signed into law HB 1061, a bill to eliminate debtors' prisons in Colorado. An overwhelming majority in the legislature supported HB1061, which will end the expensive and inhumane practice by local municipalities of jailing people who cannot afford to pay fees or fines. The bill, sponsored by Thornton Rep. Joe Salazar, is the result of a two-year statewide ACLU investigation into the use of debtors' prison practices by municipal courts. Public Policy Director.... | Read More

May 8th, 2014

Map: Colorado Counties and ICE Detainers

ACLU of Colorado By: ACLU of Colorado Is your county sheriff still honoring detainer requests from Immigration and Customs Enforcement? imap5.init({usermap:40872302,local:true,base:""}); Green = counties that will no longer honor ICE detainer requests The ACLU of Colorado sent letters to every sheriff in the state calling into question the legal authority to detain people for up to 6 days at the request of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). Sheriffs.... | Read More



  • On November 21, 2016, 13 Aurora police officers responded to a simple noise complaint at Alberto Torres’s home. As happens all too often, Aurora police officers escalated this minor issue into a brutal affair. They beat Mr. Torres solely because he delayed exiting his garage to ask his wife to interpret for him. With that beating, the lives of Mr. Torres and every member of his family were changed and he has yet to recover. ACLU of Colorado fought to obtain justice for Mr. Torres, and Aurora has now paid him $285,000. But money is not justice, and the brutality of the Aurora Police Department against people of color has continued unabated.

    It doesn’t have to be this way.

    Imagine, if instead of 13 officers being dispatched to Mr. Torres’s home for a noise complaint, the City of Aurora sent a civilian-led response team to check on his welfare and ask that he and his friends lower their sound, resulting in a non-violent solution to a minor issue?

    ACLU Settles Case With Aurora After Police Brutalize and Unlawfully Arrest Alberto Torres

  • Hope is a discipline. It’s a commitment that together, we can create a more perfect union. We won’t rest until we fulfill the promise of equal rights for ALL people in the United States.

    Join us in our fight to fulfill this promise and move forward with hope by donating to the ACLU of Colorado. Your donation supports the ACLU’s strengths that make our work effective and collaborative.

    Donate now at

  • Anthony Martinez is 84-years-old and suffering from renal failure, as well as other serious medical conditions including dementia. He is currently incarcerated in the Sterling Correctional Facility, site of one of Colorado’s largest COVID-19 outbreaks with almost 600 active COVID-19 cases. He and his family are understandably terrified that he will catch the virus and die.

    In the midst of this public health crisis, incarcerated people as vulnerable as Anthony, could and should be immediately released to safely live out their remaining years with family.

    Read more about Anthony Martinez and other at-risk incarcerated people. 

  • Ronald Johnson is pre-diabetic, suffers from asthma and high blood pressure, and regularly uses an inhaler to breathe. His age and respiratory ailments put him at risk of serious illness and death if he contracts COVID-19. With over hundreds of active cases in Colorado’s prisons, his family fears he will not make it out alive. His daughter, Amber, says, “In prison, he can’t protect himself and he can’t social distance. My deep fear is that my dad will die in prison. That is an awful, traumatic reality to consider. My chest is tight just thinking about how quickly it spreads and how vulnerable he is.”

    Governor Hickenlooper shortened his sentence following testimony from family, friends and correctional officers advocating for his early release. Yet, he is still eight years away from parole. While he remains in prison, COVID-19 continues to spread. Ronald’s three siblings, four children and four grandchildren are desperate for his release.

    Read more about Ronald Johnson and other at-risk incarcerated people.