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.
ACLU sues on behalf of Colorado woman who was jailed 27 days because she could not pay a $55 fee
November 7, 2017 DENVER - The ACLU of Colorado filed a lawsuit in federal court this morning against El Paso County on behalf of Jasmine Still, a Colorado Springs resident who was held in jail for 27 days after a court granted her release, without payment of money, through a personal recognizance bond (PR bond). Despite the court’s order, El Paso County continued to hold Ms. Still, because she was unable to pay a $55 fee for El Paso County Pretrial Services. According to the lawsuit, El Paso.... | Read More
Bonus Pod: Local Elections Matter
https://soundcloud.com/thepurplestatereport/local-elections-matter Subscribe to our podcast. On this bonus podcast, we highlight a local Colorado election that could have huge implications for the future of our public schools and the integrity of our state constitution. Out of state interests are pouring piles of money into Douglas County to revive a private school voucher scheme that was declared unconstitutional by the Colorado Supreme Court because it illegally funnels taxpayer money to private,.... | Read More
Denver’s Park Banishment Program Ruled Unconstitutional (Again)
DENVER – The Denver District Court affirmed a lower court ruling finding Denver’s park exclusion directive unconstitutional because it denies fundamental due process rights. In a decision filed Wednesday, the court upheld a complete dismissal of criminal charges against Troy Holm, an ACLU of Colorado client who faced a year in jail for entering a park after he was banned under the directive. “By authorizing police to issue so-called “Suspension Notices” that immediately made it.... | Read More
ACLU Files Brief at Supreme Court Arguing That Businesses Open to Public Cannot Discriminate Against Customers
WASHINGTON — The American Civil Liberties Union today filed its brief in the Supreme Court in a case in which a Colorado bakery refused to serve a same-sex couple seeking a cake for their wedding reception. The case, Masterpiece Cakeshop, Ltd. v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission, will be heard at the Supreme Court on December 5th. The Colorado courts found that the bakery violated Colorado’s anti-discrimination law by refusing to serve Charlie Craig and David Mullins when they walked into.... | Read More
Episode 7: “We’re all together to defend the bill of rights.”
https://soundcloud.com/thepurplestatereport/episode-7-were-all-together-to-defend-the-bill-of-rights Subscribe to our podcast. On today’s episode, John sits down with David Cole, ACLU national Legal Director. Mr. Cole oversees the ACLU’s U.S. Supreme Court docket. He discusses the cases that will be decided during what he calls “A huge session at the Supreme Court” and the wide implications of their outcomes. Also, John has a news update on an investigation into abusive practices at a.... | Read More
Episode 6: “I think we need to be honest with each other.”
https://soundcloud.com/thepurplestatereport/we-need-to-be-honest Subscribe to our podcast. On today’s episode, John sits down with Jeffrey Robinson, ACLU Deputy Legal Director, and Director for the Trone Center for Justice & Equality. Mr. Robinson, the ACLU’s top racial justice expert, discusses the dark history of Confederate Monuments across the country, Trump’s criticism of NFL athletes who have knelt in protest of police violence, and what we can learn from our past to combat systemic.... | Read More