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 03, 2011

Parole Measure Draws Emotional Pros and Cons


DENVER — Mothers of children in cemetery plots, others whose sons sit in cages without hope of tasting freedom before they die and sons whose elderly mothers met sadistic ends emptied their angst last week on the Colorado General Assembly.

They had been mobilized by a proposal in the Legislature that would have made 48 aging people in the bubble — juveniles sentenced to life in prison between 1991 and 2006 — eligible for parole after serving 40 years in prison.

In 1991, Colorado adopted its life-without-parole sentencing structure for first-degree murder.

In 2006, the state backed away from applying life without parole to juvenile offenders.

But for 48 people (now all adults) who received the sentence one rung on the ladder below the death penalty, parole never will be an option unless the law changes.

That’s what HB1287 would have done. It looked to grant people convicted as juveniles parole eligibility after 40 calendar years in prison. Even if paroled, they would remain under the supervision of the Colorado Department of Corrections as parolees for a lifetime.

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