Colorado Rights Blog


  • 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: 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

  • 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 of Colorado Announces Launch of Statewide Justice Initiative

June 22, 2021

Seguido en Español.

DENVER – Today, ACLU of Colorado announced the launch of Expanding the Table for Justice (ETFJ), a statewide initiative and 60-day community listening tour. The ETFJ mission is to connect with Colorado advocacy groups, anointed and appointed leaders, and everyday individuals to learn about their work, how they view the work of the ACLU, and how ACLU of Colorado may better support and engage community on the civil liberties issues that matter most.

ACLU of Colorado formed ETFJ as part of their priorities under new leadership to engage as trusted and collaborative partners with all communities whose rights are at stake under systemic oppression. Expanding the Table for Justice is led by Deborah Richardson, ACLU of Colorado’s new Executive Director and project coordinators, Julian Camera, Field Organizer, and Nicole Loy, Paralegal.

“My agenda is transparent,” Richardson said. “The ACLU of Colorado will transform, in warp speed, to align with our stated values of being for the people and of the people. And the first step along this journey is active collaborations with all communities.”

Individuals, community leaders, justice organizations, policymakers, and advocates across the state are invited to engage in a series of interactive, thought-provoking conversations and listening sessions. ETFJ team members and project stakeholders will discuss issues including; criminal legal reform, disability rights, homelessness, immigrants’ rights, Indigenous justice, LGBTQ+ rights, multifaith issues, racial justice, reproductive rights, voting rights, and more.

Expanding the Table for Justice officially launches June 29, 2021, at 12 p.m. MST through a virtual Zoom meeting where ETFJ team members will discuss the initiative and answer questions.

Register here:

Learn more about Expanding the Table for Justice at or by emailing


The ACLU of Colorado is the state’s oldest civil rights organization, protecting and defending the civil rights of all Coloradans through litigation, education and advocacy.

ACLU de Colorado anuncia el lanzamiento de la iniciativa de justicia estatal

DENVER – Hoy, ACLU de Colorado anunció el lanzamiento de la Expansión de la Mesa para la Justicia (EMPJ), una iniciativa estatal y una gira de escucha comunitaria de 60 días. La misión de EMPJ es conectarse con grupos de defensa de Colorado, líderes ungidos y designados y personas de la comunidad para conocer su trabajo, cómo ven el trabajo de ACLU y cómo ACLU de Colorado puede apoyar e involucrar mejor a la comunidad en los temas de libertades civiles que más importan.

ACLU de Colorado formó EMPJ como parte de sus prioridades bajo un nuevo liderazgo para participar como socios confiables y colaborativos con todas las comunidades cuyos derechos están en juego bajo la opresión sistémica. La Expansión de la Mesa para la Justicia está dirigida por Deborah Richardson, nueva directora ejecutiva y coordinadores de proyectos de ACLU de Colorado, Julian Camera, organizador de campo, y Nicole Loy, asistente legal.

“Mi agenda es transparente,” dijo Richardson. “ACLU de Colorado se transformará, a gran velocidad, para alinearse con nuestros valores declarados de ser para la gente y de la gente. Y el primer paso de este viaje son las colaboraciones activas con todas las comunidades.”

Se invita a personas, líderes comunitarios, organizaciones de justicia, legisladores y defensores de todo el estado a participar en una serie de conversaciones interactivas y sesiones de escucha que invitan a la reflexión. Los miembros del equipo de EMPJ y las partes interesadas del proyecto debatirán cuestiones que incluyen; reforma legal penal, derechos de las personas con discapacidad, personas sin hogar, derechos de los inmigrantes, justicia indígena, derechos LGBTQ +, asuntos multireligiosos, justicia racial, derechos reproductivos, derecho al voto y más.

La Expansión de la Mesa para la Justicia se lanza oficialmente el 29 de junio de 2021 a las 12 p.m. MST a través de una reunión virtual de Zoom donde los miembros del equipo EMPJ discutirán la iniciativa y responderán preguntas.

Registre aqui:

Obtenga más información sobre cómo ampliar la mesa por la justicia en: o por correo electronico:


ACLU de Colorado es la organización de derechos civiles más antigua del estado, que protege y defiende los derechos civiles de todos los habitantes de Colorado a través de litigios, educación y defensa.


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