DENVER, Colorado — A group gathered on the steps of the Colorado State Capitol to protest the lengthy sentence given to Rogel Aguilera-Mederos, the truck driver who crashed into stopped traffic on I-70 after losing his brakes in April 2019.
Four people died instantly, and many more were injured in the crash and subsequent fire on the expressway.
The small-scale protest included about eight people, organized by Jessica Luna, and was originally planned to be a march.
"We understand that the judge had to adhere to the minimum sentencing per law," Luna said. "However, we do believe that was an unjust sentencing. We are talking about five lives gone, opposed to four now, with the 110-year sentence ran consecutively as opposed to concurrently," said Luna.
>Video below: Aguilera-Mederos gives emotional statement at sentencing hearing.
Community activists said they are raising awareness about the change.org petition, which has already received more than 4.4 million signatures.
"I'm not here to take anything away from the people who have lost loved ones, who’s lives have been lost in this," she said. "What I am doing today here today is standing here in hopes that one more life is not lost. So to the families, I am so sorry for your grief and everything that you are going through."
Other protestors agreed, saying there needs to be a re-evaluation of the sentencing laws and the surrounding legislation that mandated the long sentence.
"110 years is very much time, very much time," Jeanette Vizguerra. "We are sorry for the people who lost family, but this is one accident."
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