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  • 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. 

  • 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.

ACLU of Colorado Opposes New “Personhood” Bill, SB 268

4/17/2015

DENVER – The American Civil Liberties Union of Colorado issued the following statement today on SB 268, the “Personhood” bill introduced in the Colorado State Senate on April 14:

“The ACLU of Colorado strongly opposes Senate Bill 268, the latest in a long line of attempts to change Colorado’s laws to establish legal personhood at conception.

“Colorado voters and legislators have repeatedly recognized the dangerous consequences of defining a fertilized egg as a person and have summarily rejected all previous “personhood” initiatives, even those cloaked in deceptive language and intentions.

“We extend our deepest sympathies to Michelle Wilkins and her family.  What she experienced was tragic and horrifying.  But her personal tragedy should not be used to push an unnecessary statute or an extreme political agenda.

“Colorado’s Crimes Against Pregnant Women Act was carefully crafted and enacted by the legislature for exactly this type of case.  It provides for severe criminal penalties against offenders who wrongfully harm a woman and cause her to lose a pregnancy, and it does so without interfering with reproductive rights. In this case, the alleged perpetrator has been charged with multiple felonies and faces a sentence of more than 100 years in prison.

“SB 268 contains language that is ambiguous and unclear.  If it were passed, it would ultimately be up to the courts to decide the true scope of the law and its effects on reproductive health and the rights of women.  The one thing that is clear is that this bill aims to permanently alter our laws to grant legal personhood at conception, a perilous legal precedent that would open a Pandora’s box of dangerous consequences, both intended and unintended, for Colorado women and their families.”



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