Colorado Rights Blog


  • 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.

  • Tuesday Olson knew her pregnancy was in trouble and tried to access hospital care as soon as possible. But there was a problem: she was in jail. This is her story.
  • It’s time to end the death penalty in Colorado. Family members who lost loved ones to murder speak out against an unjust and broken system.

ACLU of Colorado Mourns the Loss of Long-time Leader and Advocate Judd Golden

ACLU of Colorado is deeply saddened by the death of Judd Golden, 70, on January 28, 2020. Judd was killed in a head-on collision on I-25 north of Pueblo when another car crossed the median. A long-time ACLU leader and volunteer, Judd was head of the Boulder Chapter of the ACLU for 20 years and a member of the chapter beginning in 1985. He was a volunteer cooperating attorney with the ACLU of Iowa starting in 1974, and moved to Colorado in 1984 as the Mountain States Counsel, a national ACLU staff attorney position based in Denver. Judd is survived by his wife Julie Golden, who also served in co-director positions at the ACLU in Iowa and Colorado.

Judd was known for his strong civil liberties leadership in Boulder and strong advocacy presence at the Boulder City Council. He played a key role in Boulder’s ordinance in 1989 barring random drug testing of employees by companies operating in the city without a clear connection to safety, later preserving the ordinance from attempts to weaken it. He was a cooperating attorney in CU v. Derdeyn in 1993, which found random drug testing of student-athletes unconstitutional. He advocated for Amendment 64 legalizing marijuana use in Colorado in 2012. During his his years in Boulder, Judd successfully advocated for and protected a policy barring CU coaches from leading students in group prayer, and his advocacy efforts addressed prisoner rights, criminalization of homelessness, surveillance cameras, protest rights, and other civil liberties issues. More recently, Judd worked on drug policy reform with the Coalition for Drug Testing Policy Reform and NORML.

According to Julie Golden, Judd had requested that no formal memorial service be held in the event of his death. Memorial gifts may be made to the ACLU Foundation of Colorado.

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