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, August 30, 2009

Prisoner Leads Tunes For Peers Doing Time

The Denver Post

CAÑON CITY — Chuck Lim-brick Jr. hears it in his head. He hears the melody. He hears the notes. On this day, however, he just can't get his fellow prisoner to hear the same thing.

"Why we got to do this all the time?" he barks. "C'mon, man. Sing the note. Why we gotta go through this every time?"

Limbrick, a convicted murderer, quiets himself for a second, and then he raises his head. He's not about to give up.

"You can do it," Limbrick says as he lets out a hint of a grin. The man across from him, dressed in prison-issued green fatigues, starts to sing the chorus once again.

"There it is!" Limbrick screams.

It's just another day inside the prison chapel at the Colorado Territorial Correctional Facility in Cañon City.

"I can't fix lights. I'm not a plumber. I'm a musician, That's what I do," Limbrick explains.

And by all accounts, Limbrick is one amazingly gifted musician.

"In my 25 years as a chaplain, I have never met a guy like Chuck," prison chaplain Dan Matsche says. "He is the most talented musician I have ever seen."

Yet 21 years ago, Limbrick, then 15, was known only for shooting his mother in their Colorado Springs home. His second shot killed Betty Limbrick on Sept. 27, 1988.

The following year, then-El Paso County District Attorney John Suthers told jurors during his closing statements that shortly before Betty Limbrick died, she uttered these words: "Chuckie, I love you, but you shot me."

Convicted of first-degree murder as an adult, Limbrick, at the age of 16, became the youngest inmate at the time in the state's adult prison system.

Matsche believes Limbrick turned his life around when he decided music would be a central part of his character.


Marcia McGuire said...

I have heard Chuck Limbrick's music personally. It is absolutely breathtaking. He is highly gifted and dedicated to his spirituality.

Once again, we have a case where a minor was charged as an adult when a genuinely concerned correctional direction such as juvenile detention, education and CARE would have helped Chuck lead a productive life in society. No one can judge this man and the events that led to his behavior. As in all cases, each are exclusive to every individual. Chuck must live each day knowing what he did. That in itself is punishment.

Is the age of 16 a minor "child" or is the age of 16 an adult? It can't be both. The term *minor* or *adult* only applies when it's convenient for the state of the Colorado judicial system and CPS. The state of Colorado continues its abuses upon children by imprisoning them for life. Shameful!

This is one example of how barbaric the system is in the United States. All other industrialized nations apply vigilant guidance for their minor children in need of psychological and emotional healing. And, I will add, the crime rates in those countries are far, far less than in the United States.

Anonymous said...

Your right Marcia, once again a minor is tried as an adult and once again a prominent mans name pops up, JOHN SUTHER> currently AG and still doesnt understand constitutional law. He tried a minor as an adult??djw