On Sept. 17, police targeted and arrested several antiracist activists in Denver: Trey Quinn, Joel Northam, Eliza Lucero, Russell Ruch, Lillian House and Terrance Roberts.
17th District Attorney Dave Young charged activists with 33 felony counts and 34 misdemeanor charges, from stealing counter-protest signs to inciting a riot and kidnapping. On Thursday Sept. 24, all remaining organizers were bailed out. They face a long and trying road ahead.
Let us first recognize the ultimate tragedy that has transpired: Elijah McClain should be here. Randy Roedema, Nathan Woodyard and Jason Rosenblatt still have jobs in Aurora PD, funded by our taxes. They still walk free. They can still call their mothers. Elijah cannot.
More than a year has passed since APD officers, with the assistance of paramedics Jeremy Cooper and Ryan Walker, murdered Elijah. DA Young has failed to take any meaningful steps whatsoever toward justice for Elijah and his family.
The activists and organizers gathered the community peacefully on several occasions to demand action, including July 3.
The 17th District DA’s office expects us to accept the notion that APD officers—with a multimillion dollar budget, firearms, riot gear, chemical & military-grade weapons and vehicles— were “kidnapped” by unarmed protestors with cardboard signs and plastic swim goggles as they sat inside APD headquarters for a few hours. Now, the state is attempting to put these activists in cages for years to make examples out of them.
We condemn this blatant fascism with a full-throated cry: These charges are disgusting, overt retaliation. They are the product of a deeply corrupt system— one built to favor white supremacy and stifle our fight for justice. In bringing the community together to protest this rotten reality, community organizers confronted this system at its core. We echo and uplift the demands that all charges be dropped against every individual, and reject this assault on the movement and free speech.
We ask that Aurora & Denver community show up in solidarity with all political prisoners this Saturday Sept. 25 on the Capitol steps at noon. If you’re able, donate:
- Support for PSL organizers
- Colorado Freedom Fund
- National Lawyers Guild
- Venmo for Trey Quinn: @FreeTrey
We implore you to ask:
Who will be left to speak for you?