A decide previous 7 days dismissed all expenses from a single of six Denver-location protest leaders who ended up arrested following arranging demonstrations against police brutality in Aurora all through the summer time.
Prosecutors in the 18th Judicial District Attorney’s Office requested Thursday that the 4 felony fees from Russell Ruch, 33, be dismissed, according to court documents.
“The persons feel that the finishes of justice could not be further served by continued prosecution of the defendant,” Main Deputy District Lawyer Clinton McKinzie wrote in the motion, which was filed seven times right after new District Attorney John Kellner was sworn in to exchange George Brauchler, who brought the prices.
“This was a purely political prosecution,” reported lawyer Joshua Amos, who represented Ruch alongside with lawyer Martin Stuart.
Ruch was 1 of six protest organizers who had been charged in September on a selection counts — ranging from kidnapping to inciting a riot — in what Ruch’s lawyers say was a apparent endeavor to quash the protests, which centered on the dying of Elijah McClain, who died soon after he was violently stopped by Aurora police in 2019.
“We think it was an egregious abuse of the legal procedure,” Amos mentioned of the fees versus Ruch. “The legal justice program should really not be utilised as a political resource to silence constitutionally safeguarded no cost speech.”
A spokeswoman for Kellner declined to remark on the dismissal Monday. Brauchler, who is no more time district legal professional but is continuing to work in the business office to handle the superior-profile STEM College Highlands Ranch shooting situation, stated his selection to cost the protesters was not politically inspired.
“I’ve under no circumstances manufactured a political choice about charging in my occupation, and this was no various from that,” he claimed.
Ruch, who has no felony background, was accused of two felony counts of theft and two felony counts of conspiracy to commit theft soon after video taken in the course of a June protest confirmed him standing in a crowd of protesters as an additional man or woman took a handmade indicator from a counter-protester, according to a 39-web site affidavit detailing the allegations versus all 6 leaders. The affidavit says the movie displays Ruch “knows the theft is occurring and seems to actively assist… in the theft of the indication.”
The video clip in fact built it crystal clear Ruch did not steal anything, his lawyers mentioned Monday, noting that there are many several hours of video evidence in the scenario and that no new evidence has been identified given that the rates ended up submitted — practically nothing, they stated, that would instantly transform the points of the situation.
The prosecution’s request for the costs to be dropped indicates prosecutors “didn’t have a situation,” Stuart claimed.
The fees in opposition to the other 5 protest leaders — Terrance Roberts, Lillian Dwelling, Joel Northam, Whitney Lucero and Trey Quinn — are still pending, according to courtroom data.
Property, Northam and Lucero are scheduled for preliminary hearings on March 9 in Adams County District Courtroom. Quinn’s situation is set for arraignment on Feb. 23, and a jury trial is scheduled to start off April 14 for Roberts.
Some of the costs that Residence, Northam and Roberts facial area stem from a July 12 protest in Aurora all through which a driver drove his Jeep by a group of protesters who have been blocking an interstate. As the Jeep drove by way of, protester Samuel Younger is accused of shooting at the Jeep, placing two folks in the group.
Youthful, who was billed with tried initially-diploma murder in the capturing, appeared in courtroom Monday and his scenario was established for a March 15 arraignment. His lawyer, Andrew Castle, reported during the brief court docket visual appeal that plea negotiations with the district attorney’s business have been ongoing.