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?
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.
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.
Category Archives: Marriage Equality
Masterpiece Cakeshop Violated Civil Rights Law by Turning Away Gay Couple, Court Rules
8/13/2015 DENVER – In a unanimous decision issued this morning, the Colorado Court of Appeals ruled that a Lakewood Bakery unlawfully discriminated against David Mullins and Charlie Craig by refusing to sell them a cake for their wedding reception. The ruling affirms a finding in May 2014 from the Colorado Civil Rights Commission that Masterpiece Cakeshop’s policy of turning away same-sex couples violates Colorado’s Anti-Discrimination Act. “Today is a proud day for equality and for.... | Read More
State Appeals Court Hears Arguments in Case of Gay Couple Discriminated Against by Bakery
7/7/15 DENVER – The Colorado Court of Appeals heard oral arguments today in a discrimination case brought by a same-sex couple against a cake shop that refused to sell them a cake for their wedding reception. In 2012, Colorado residents David Mullins and Charlie Craig visited Masterpiece Cakeshop to order a wedding cake. Mullins and Craig planned to marry in Massachusetts and then celebrate with family and friends back home. Masterpiece owner Jack Phillips informed the couple that, because.... | Read More
ACLU of Colorado Celebrates Historic Marriage Equality Ruling
June 26, 2015 DENVER - Today, the U.S. Supreme Court held that states may not deny the freedom to marry to same-sex couples throughout the country. Colorado’s ban on same-sex marriage was lifted last year after Adams County District Court Judge C. Scott Crabtree declared it unconstitutional and the Colorado Supreme Court lifted its stay on his decision, making the judgment final. ACLU of Colorado Executive Director Nathan Woodliff-Stanley issued the following statement: “Today’s.... | Read More
ACLU of Colorado Celebrates Marriage Equality in Colorado
10/7/14 DENVER – The Colorado Supreme Court this morning lifted its stay on the ruling of Adams County District Court Judge C. Scott Crabtree declaring Colorado’s ban on same-sex marriage unconstitutional, making that judgment final. The Colorado Attorney General has ordered all 64 county clerks to begin issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples and licenses are currently being issued throughout the state. ACLU of Colorado Executive Director Nathan Woodliff-Stanley issued the following.... | Read More
VIDEO: New Latino Voices Emerge in Support of Marriage Equality During Hispanic Heritage Month in Colorado
October 1, 2014 DENVER – In light of National Hispanic Heritage Month and with another statewide Latino organization joining the groundswell of support for marriage equality in Colorado, Why Marriage Matters Colorado released a short video featuring the Rodriguez family, a Latino family from Longmont. The video features Ray Rodriguez and his family, as he shares how he came out to them and discusses their unconditional support for him – and the freedom to marry for same-sex couples. You.... | Read More
Statewide Marriage Campaign Issues Statement on Federal Ruling Striking Down Colorado’s Marriage Ban
July 23, 2014 DENVER – Today, U.S. District Judge Raymond P. Moore declared Colorado’s marriage ban unconstitutional -- the latest of dozens of state and federal rulings striking down similar bans across the country. State Attorney General John Suthers has continued to defend Colorado's ban, despite acknowledging that it is likely to be overturned in the end. Suthers has already wasted taxpayer dollars on the appeal of the state-level ruling, and he has indicated that he intends to waste further.... | Read More
Marriage Equality Petition Delivered to Attorney General Suthers: Stop Wasting Taxpayer Dollars – Stop the Appeals
July 17, 2014 More than 5,000 Coloradans signed a petition that was delivered today to Colorado Attorney General John Suthers, urging him to stop wasting the state’s resources and allow all loving, committed couples the freedom to marry. A group of couples and their families, faith leaders, elected officials, and community leaders from Why Marriage Matters Colorado gathered at the Ralph L. Carr Judicial Center over the lunch hour to present the petition signatures and ask Attorney General.... | Read More
Statewide Marriage Campaign Issues Statement on Judge Crabtree’s State Court Ruling Striking Down Colorado’s Marriage Ban with Stay
July 9, 2014 DENVER – Today, Colorado District Court Judge C. Scott Crabtree issued a ruling striking down Colorado’s unconstitutional marriage ban, with a stay pending appeal. In response, Wendy Howell, State Director of Why Marriage Matters Colorado – the broad coalition working to secure the freedom to marry for all committed couples in the Centennial State, released the following statement: “Today, all across Colorado, committed same-sex couples who have waited for years, even.... | Read More
Why Marriage Matters Colorado Issues Statement on Defendants’ Motion Today in Colorado Marriage Equality Case
July 3, 2014 DENVER — In response to the motion today in Federal court by defendants in the lawsuit filed yesterday on Colorado’s same-sex marriage ban, Wendy Howell, Director of Why Marriage Matters – Colorado, issued the following statement: “We are pleased to see that the defendants in the latest marriage lawsuit agree that after the 10th Circuit’s ruling, Colorado’s same-sex marriage ban is legally indefensible. However, we are disappointed they want to let this issue.... | Read More
Statewide Marriage Campaign Issues Statement on 10th Circuit Court Decision Striking Down Utah’s Marriage Ban
LGBT Coloradans and their allies will hold post-decision rally at 7 p.m. tonight at the Greek Theater in downtown Denver’s Civic Center Park June 25, 2014 DENVER – Today, the Denver-based 10th Circuit Court of Appeals made history as the highest court in the nation so far to affirm the freedom to marry -- striking down the unconstitutional ban on marriage for same-sex couples in Utah. Why Marriage Matters Colorado, the broad coalition working to secure the freedom to marry for all committed.... | Read More
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