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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.

Meet the New Executive Director Webinar

ACLU of Colorado is pleased to announce Deborah J. Richardson as its new executive director. She will lead the organization in its mission to protect, defend, and extend the civil rights and civil liberties of all people in Colorado. Most recently, Richardson was the executive director of the International Human Trafficking Institute of the National Center for Civil and Human Rights in Atlanta and was formerly its executive vice president. She will officially assume the position of ACLU of Colorado’s Executive Director on March 1.

Save the date for a “Meet the new executive director” webinar on Wednesday, March 10. Register in advance: http://bit.ly/3qOjVmc

“I am honored that the board of directors has selected me as the next executive director of the ACLU of Colorado,” said Richardson. “There is still work ahead in protecting and advancing civil liberties and rights for all. The deep fissures in our nation that surfaced in 2020 remain. It is our imperative to not only shine a light on these disparities but to correct them.”

Ms. Richardson has more than three decades of experience in transformative non-profit executive leadership in global, national, and local organizations working to advance civil and human rights for non-dominant identity groups. Richardson is a nationally recognized expert and advocate in advancing justice for women and their families, convening diverse, cross-cultural, community-based coalitions committed to equitable societies.

Deborah J. Richardson is a native of Atlanta, Georgia, and her lived observations and direct experiences informed her deep commitment to social change. “Growing up in Atlanta, the think tank of the American Civil Rights Movement, I was heavily influenced by the active engagement of my parents, and every adult I knew,” shared Ms. Richardson. “My own participation began at the age of 14 when I was among a group of students who integrated Atlanta Public Schools. My activism continued throughout college and my career.” Ms. Richardson has also served as the chief executive officer of The Atlanta Women’s Foundation and as chief program officer of the Women’s Funding Network in San Francisco, California.

“We are confident that Deborah’s visionary leadership style, history of consensus building, commitment to social justice, and lived and professional experiences fighting for civil and human rights will be a powerful combination as our organization navigates this critical juncture in our nation’s history. She has displayed international leadership on issues of gender and racial equity, and we look forward to her serving as a catalyst for even more transformational change from the ACLU of Colorado,” said Maurice “Scotty” Scott, M.D, Chair of the ACLU of Colorado Board of Directors.

ACLU of Colorado





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