Final charges dropped against activists involved in protests over the death of Elijah McClain
The final charges have been dropped against a handful of activists arrested for their role in protests last year over the death of Elijah McClain.
The District Attorneys for Adams and Arapahoe County filed felony charges — including attempted kidnapping and inciting a riot — against six protest participants for their roles in three different protests, including one which blocked a highway and involved the multi-hour blockade of an Aurora police station.
Those arrested included Lillian Rose House, Joel Prentice Northam, Whitney Hanna Lucero, Trey Anthony Quinn, John Russel Ruch, and Terrance Terrell Roberts.
However, in the year since, and with new DAs leading both offices, the cases have been progressively whittled down to less and less serious charges, until the final counts were dismissed on Monday. In exchange, House and Northam each performed 50 hours of community service and Roberts, who was facing less serious charges, completed 30.
In March, an Adams County judge threw out the felony charges against Lucero, Northam and House after a preliminary hearing. And then a month later, in Arapahoe County, the new DA there amended his office’s charges to also remove all the felonies against Northam, House, and Roberts.
The National Committee for Justice in Denver, which formed to advocate for the protesters’ legal defense, called the fact that they were not convicted on a single charge a “tremendous victory.”
Editor’s Note: This story has been updated to include the fact that three of the protesters completed community service related to their charges.