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  • Cedric Watkins is a father, uncle, entrepreneur-in-training, and a vital community pillar for many others. While behind bars, he has tirelessly devoted himself to serving his peers and his community. He developed gang disaffiliation programs for other incarcerated individuals and is currently involved with Defy Ventures. He sends letters and calls his daughter as much as he can.

    Cedric is currently in prison at Sterling Correctional Facility. He was convicted of aggravated robbery, burglary, kidnapping, theft and sentenced to 80 years; no one was seriously injured or killed. For comparison, a person convicted of second-degree murder in Colorado faces a maximum sentence of 48 years. Cedric has already served 20 years and has fully rehabilitated during that time.

    It’s time to bring Cedric home: acluco.org/redemption. Redemption is real. Clemency is compassion.

  • 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 https://action.aclu.org/give/support-aclu-colorado

  • 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. 

ACLU Calls on Mitch Morrissey to Retract Misguided “Ballot Selfie” Threat

Statement of ACLU of Colorado Legal Director Mark Silverstein

“The ACLU of Colorado calls on Denver District Attorney Mitch Morrissey to immediately retract his misguided threat to prosecute voters for taking and sharing “ballot selfies.”  Recent court cases in New Hampshire and Indiana have affirmed the right to take ballot selfies and share them, citing the First Amendment right of voters to express support for a candidate and to communicate that support to others.  Legislation in seven additional states expressly authorizes “ballot selfies.”

What is more dangerous about Mr. Morrissey’s announcement is the false implication that all voters are restricted from sharing information about their ballot with others, and the impact that could have on the elderly, people who are disabled, and non-English speaking voters at the polls.  The Colorado Voter Access and Modernization Act specifically gives voters who need assistance a right to bring a friend, a family member, or any other designee to help at the polls, and they cannot be challenged when that help requires them to show their ballot to someone rendering assistance.

Mr. Morrissey’s misguided statement could confuse both voters and election monitors.  It poses the risk of chilling voters who need assistance from asking for it if they fear that showing their ballot will violate the law.  It should be retracted immediately.”

Read: Judge Says New Hampshire Ban on Ballot Selfies Violates First Amendment and Common Sense



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