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  • 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 Statement on Aurora Protester Arrests

DENVER – The following is a statement from ACLU of Colorado Interim Executive Director, Stephen Meswarb.

“Yesterday, prosecutors issued a more than 30-page indictment against activists protesting the killing of Elijah McClain and systemic racism by the Aurora Police Department. It has been more than a year since Aurora police officers killed Elijah McClain, and prosecutors have yet to issue an indictment against the officers who took his life. This is not justice.

Yesterday’s decision by the district attorneys for the 17th and 18th Judicial Districts could be viewed as a one-sided viewpoint bias that fails to reckon with what the community is asking for — justice for Elijah McClain and an end to police brutality.”

“This kind of overcharging of protesters is troubling because it only serves to inflame tensions further and deter peaceful demonstrations. Imagine if police and district attorneys put as much effort into protecting Black and Brown lives as they do into working up criminal cases against organizers working to end police violence — we might begin to see a new day in Aurora and a renewed trust in our legal system,” said ACLU of Colorado Public Policy Director, Denise Maes.

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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.



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