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, December 21, 2008

Cop Faces Charges For Beating

The Denver District Attorney’s Office announced today it will pursue charges against a vice narcotics detective in an April beating of an arrestee outside Coors Field on the Colorado Rockies’ opening day.

According to reports, a sports television show crew caught on videotape Det. Michael Cordova slamming John Heaney’s head into the pavement, breaking his front teeth.

Reports said the tussle started after Cordova and another officer accused the man of running a red light on his bicycle as they conducted a ticket scalping sting.

The detectives admitted to kicking, punching and choking Heaney, claiming they used excessive force because Heaney had punched Cordova in the nose, a claim Heaney denied


Anonymous said...

Has a grand jury okayed this?? I dont believe that the public really trusts the Denver DA's judgement. Joe Morales admits he uses false charges to prosecute people. His admission is on a court transcript which he used false charges to send an inmate to another six years in prison. Same for Morrissey in the Sean Isbell case. Those DA's belong in the HALL OF SHAME. djw

Anonymous said...

Ms. Bacon wrote a very good article in The Examiner. So far, I have had positive experiences with the Colorado Springs police. They have, for the most part, patience, a sense of humor and they will take the time to speak in depth when there are questions.

I can't say much else for the system, especially the legal and court experiences. The prosecution (anywhere) is out for simply that: prosecution. For the greater part, prosecutors lack integrity. It is not innocence or guilt, it is the win. Ugly.

As for detectives ... ah ... I have respect and admiration for Lt. Grady ONLY. My sympathies are with him considering the ilk he must work with. He took the time to speak with me for 30 minutes on the phone in 2006 and was very respectful and patient.

Colorado Springs police officers tend to be fair. I'm not impressed with the average, cunning detective, prosecutor or judge. In the Springs, they apply the use of deception consistently. Not all are of questionable character, but one is ONE too many.

There is evidence of Cordova's abuse as a police officer. I wonder which prosecutors and judges will misuse their position in attempts to excuse his foul misbehavior?

Denver is looking very bad. Best get a clue and clean it up.

Anonymous said...

Unfortunately, Denver has "a clue" and nothing is being done nor has been done for a century to do anything about it. The policy of the police and justice system is to harm only those who have no political power. The last several police chiefs have been hired by the state to run the department of corrections parole and operations in the same corrupt state as the city.mpc

Anonymous said...

mpc. Understood. I am thoroughly confused as to why the CSPD and the chief of police backed the head D.A. when Newsome was fully breaking the law by driving under the influence in a county vehicle. All of this was also caught on video. His consumption of approximately one gallon of alcohol in several hours could have injured or killed a pedestrian or other drivers. An average citizen would have been booked into CJC as DUI or DWI with that video evidence. This guy isn't quitting his alcohol consumption habit. (Amy Mullaney is no sweetheart either.) The double standards and immunity are disgusting and should be challenged by every concerned citizen in Colorado. I am proud that many came through and ousted Newsome. It remains to be seen if Dan May will be an honest and fair district attorney or simply another executioner of true justice.

My guess is you are talking about Ari Zavaras. He has a tough job to do. With his experience as an ex-police chief in Denver, I would definitely expect far more progressive action on his part as head of CDOC.

As for Gov. Ritter, I am highly suspicious of his prosecution background. I don't see how he can be a fair governor when it comes to progressive changes in the laws when he was hired (by the voters) to improve the laws, including those of the CDOC. Gov. Ritter has, in return, hired a few people who are not advanced thinkers in balancing the one-sided "tough guy" system. The archaic use of punishment vs. guidance and rehabilitation will continue as long as these Neanderthals remain in the 'justice' and law occupations.

Some prosecutors and judges are myopic when it comes to fairness. Their focus is on emotional targeting, not what is fair to victims and the accused. Although this is against the rules of law as written, they apply their personal opinions rather than rational thinking.

This unfortunate abuse of position is used throughout the entire state of Colorado.

As the capitol of Colorado, Denver is being closely watched. I, for one, am appalled.

Anonymous said...