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 AND COLORADO DOC SETTLE LAWSUIT CHALLENGING CENSORSHIP PRACTICES
ACLU and Colorado DOC settle lawsuit challenging censorship practices FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE November 30, 2004 The American Civil Liberties Union of Colorado (ACLU) announced today the settlement of a lawsuit, filed in 2000 on behalf of a publisher’s association, eight publishers and seven prisoners, that challenged the standards and procedures employed by the Colorado Department of Corrections (DOC) for censoring books, newspapers, magazines, and political commentary. “The.... | Read More
STATEMENT ON WARD CHURCHILL
Statement on Ward Churchill FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE February 8, 2005 The First Amendment of the U. S. Constitution protects Ward Churchill's right to speak or write his opinions and it protects the rights of his detractors to say they do not like what he wrote or said. The ACLU of Colorado stands firmly for these rights of free speech. The ACLU of Colorado calls upon the Regents, legislators and the Governor to stop threatening Mr. Churchill's job because of the.... | Read More
LAKEWOOD AGREES TO RESTORE CENSORED ARTWORK
Lakewood agrees to restore censored artwork FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE March 16, 2005 The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) Foundation of Colorado announced today that Lakewood city officials have agreed to restore to its original condition an art exhibit that they censored last month on the ground that they believed it was “anti-American” and “anti-military.” “Art is expression that is protected by the Constitution,” said Mark Silverstein,.... | Read More
ACLU CALLS ON DENVER OFFICIALS TO DELIVER ON PROMISED POLICE REFORM
ACLU calls on Denver officials to deliver on promised police reform FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE March 24, 2005 The Denver city administration is already failing to deliver on one of its promised reforms in how it deals with incidents in which police officers kill or seriously injure civilians, a spokesperson for the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Colorado said today. “Sixteen months ago the City administration announced what it billed as the most comprehensive.... | Read More
ACLU ASKS DENVER TO WITHDRAW FROM FBI JOINT TERRORISM TASK FORCE
ACLU asks Denver to withdraw from FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force May 18, 2005 In a letter sent yesterday to Denver Mayor John Hickenlooper and the members of the Denver City Council, the ACLU of Colorado urged Denver to withdraw its detectives from the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force (JTTF). The letter followed the ACLU’s release of documents that it said confirm that the JTTF is targeting peaceful political activists for harassment and building files on constitutionally-protected.... | Read More
ACLU OF COLORADO BLASTS THE USA PATRIOT ACT
ACLU of Colorado blasts the USA PATRIOT Act FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE July 26, 2005 Reform the Patriot Act rallies were held simultaneously in Colorado Springs, Denver, Boulder and Greeley at which activists urged Congress to reform the Patriot Act. The ACLU of Colorado believes that Government has unbridled power to invade the privacy of law-abiding Americans that must be stopped. | Read More