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  • Cedric Watkins is a father, uncle, entrepreneur-in-training, and a vital community pillar for many others. While behind bars, he has tirelessly devoted himself to serving his peers and his community. He developed gang disaffiliation programs for other incarcerated individuals and is currently involved with Defy Ventures. He sends letters and calls his daughter as much as he can.

    Cedric is currently in prison at Sterling Correctional Facility. He was convicted of aggravated robbery, burglary, kidnapping, theft and sentenced to 80 years; no one was seriously injured or killed. For comparison, a person convicted of second-degree murder in Colorado faces a maximum sentence of 48 years. Cedric has already served 20 years and has fully rehabilitated during that time.

    It’s time to bring Cedric home: acluco.org/redemption. Redemption is real. Clemency is compassion.

  • 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. 

Pueblo County ACLU Chapter on the move

Pueblo Organizes and Demands Cessation to Governmental Abuses of Power

 

Actively organizing to protect our civil liberties, fired up Pueblo County ACLU of Colorado Chapter hosted its first Annual Members Meeting last night at the Historic Pueblo Union Depot.

Nearly 75 people gathered to listen to Lisa Graves, ACLU Senior Counsel for Legislative Strategy in Washington D.C, speak on important issues surrounding constitutionally protected rights, the result of the Patriot Act, and post-9/11 policies. Governmental infringements, such as, National Security Agency (NSA) spying, torture, and government secrecy, were discussed in detail.

Graves’ expertise deepened the understanding of the blatant executive offences and fueled motivation to take a stand. In her speech, she explained that whether or not the country is in a time of war, the Constitution does not protect executive warrantless spying, illegal search and seizures, nor can the president, as he sees fit, supercede civil rights.

“What is happening in Washington, is that a small group of individuals don’t care about the Constitution” said Graves. “It seems as though we are reaching a boiling point. The Right, the Left, Republicans, Democrats, conservatives and progressives have had enough.”

The more than 250 ACLU members in and surrounding Pueblo area agree and have already began to contact Congressional officials demanding a stop to adhering to illegal activities. The Pueblo Chapter recently participated in a statewide ACLU of Colorado Demand the Facts petition drive. More than 1800 petition signatures were delivered to the Colorado Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) last week demanding an investigation into telecommunication companies alleged practice of divulging Coloradoans private phone records to the NSA.

The Annual Meeting further developed the Pueblo County Chapter’s three committees. Attendees were more than excited to participate in several upcoming activities such as the Education Committee’s forums on November ballot initiatives or the Policy Committee’s Get Out and Vote Drive. The Chapter will be working on projects in 14 Southeastern Counties where volunteers and new members are always welcome.

About the ACLU of Colorado
The ACLU is a nationwide, non-profit, non-partisan organization dedicated to defending and preserving the principles of the Bill of Rights through litigation, advocacy and public education.  The ACLU Foundation of Colorado works to protect the rights of all Coloradans.



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