Who is the Colorado Criminal Justice Reform Coalition?

Our mission is to reverse the trend of mass incarceration in Colorado. We are a coalition of nearly 7,000 individual members and over 100 faith and community organizations who have united to stop perpetual prison expansion in Colorado through policy and sentence reform.

Our chief areas of interest include drug policy reform, women in prison, racial injustice, the impact of incarceration on children and families, the problems associated with re-entry and stopping the practice of using private prisons in our state.

If you would like to be involved please go to our website and become a member.

Sunday, April 06, 2008

We All Pay For Police Mistakes

This is a serious problem, how much damage can be done to someone and their family in an eight day period. Mr. Jama had to drop two classes. What if he would have had children at home?

Yes, there needs to be compensation, but more than that there needs to be accountability. Is there any punishment for the officers, the booking officer or the jailers who allowed this? If your ID isn't good enough, then why have it? They obviously didn't have Mr. Jama's fingerprints on file either.

Denver police have done it again, locking up another innocent person this time, for eight days — after messing up an arrest warrant.

The latest victim is Metro State student Muse Jama, 27.

Jama's family fled their native Somalia in 1994 partly due to that country's own problem with people disappearing mysteriously without cause.

In September, he was studying for a biology exam at his Denver apartment when two officers came knocking. They were after a suspect named Ahmed Alia in connection with an auto theft months earlier.

Jama's name — fairly common in Somalia — is one of at least 10 aliases used by Alia.

You've got the wrong guy, explained Jama, who offered his student ID, Social Security card and driver's license to prove it.

No such luck.

He was handcuffed, then hauled off for seven nights in jail where he was strip-searched, booked as Ahmed Alia and forced to answer to that name.

" 'This is your name now,' they were telling me. I lived eight days with somebody else's identity. They were the longest eight days of my life," says Jama, who had to drop two classes after his week behind bars.

A judge finally lifted the charges when a prosecutor looked at a mug shot of Alia and concluded that Jama "is obviously not this individual."

The Denver Post


Anonymous said...

We arrived a long time ago in a communist regime in Colorado. Laws are passed by the legislature to exempt local government (and big business), from liability. We recruit to our stalinist labor camps those that can be pulled in to work for 60 cents a day. If you are rich enough or lucky enough, you might be able to lay low enough to escape the DOC, and a state that routinely violates our US Constutionally guaranteed writes in favor of the "patriot act"....but if not, you have lost your entire life to these idiots.

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