GOLDEN, Colo. — The Jefferson County district attorney said Thursday that she will ask the court to consider a resentencing of 20 to 30 years for Rogel Aguilera-Mederos, the truck driver who was sentenced this month to 110 years in prison for a crash that killed four people on Interstate 70.
The 1st Judicial District Court will hold a hearing on Monday morning to rule on the District Attorney Alexis King's request to reconsider Aguilera-Mederos' sentence.
Leonard Martinez, attorney for Aguilera-Mederos, said that a sentence of 20 to 30 years "is still not consistent with the precedent of prior similar cases." He said Aguilera-Mederos' defense team will "keep all options open in achieving justice for Rogel," including the possibility of clemency.
King released a statement on Thursday saying:
“Based on the facts of this case and input from the victims and their families, my office will be asking the court to consider a sentencing range of 20-30 years when the Court is prepared to address resentencing. As the jury found, Mr. Aguilera-Mederos knowingly made multiple active choices that resulted in the death of four people, serious injuries to others, and mass destruction.
This sentencing range reflects an appropriate outcome for that conduct, which was not an accident. Given that the victims, in this case, have more than one view of an appropriate outcome, and this trial court heard the evidence presented, we believe that this hearing is the best path to securing justice for everyone involved.
Our team has connected with defense counsel and will continue to do so as both parties prepare for this resentencing opportunity. We have also been working with the Governor’s Office to ensure that the victims and their loved ones are heard both in this process and the pending clemency application with the Governor. We are grateful for the coordination with the Governor’s office and thank the Department of Corrections for expediting the required evaluation report for resentencing.
As I have in the past, I continue to support the efforts of the Governor’s Sentencing Reform Task Force. Criminal justice reform, including sentencing reform, is a priority of my administration for safer and healthier communities for all. I have been in discussions with the co-chair of the task force and have encouraged him to continue their efforts to address felony sentencing reform in Colorado.”
The full statement from Martinez is below:
“The defense for Rogel Aguilera-Mederos has received the announcement from District Attorney Alexis King’s office. Although we are glad to have the District Attorney acknowledge the unjust sentence that was handed to our client, it is still is not consistent with the precedent of prior similar cases throughout the State of Colorado and the entire country. We plan to move forward and to keep all options open in achieving justice for Rogel including the possibility of Clemency from the Governor of the State of Colorado."
The moves come after an online petition to commute Aguilera-Mederos' sentence or grant him clemency gathered more than 4 million signatures. Group gathered on the steps of the Colorado State Capitol on Monday and Wednesday to protest the sentence.
Gov. Jared Polis said his office received an application for clemency from Aguilera-Mederos' attorney on Monday afternoon. The governor said his legal team is reviewing the application.
A jury in October found him guilty on 27 counts in connection with the crash. The jury had to decide whether the crash resulted from a series of bad choices by the driver or a mechanical failure he had no control over.
The case has brought attention to Colorado's mandatory sentencing laws, which experts say played a role in the length of the sentence.
District Court Judge Bruce Jones sentenced Aguilera-Mederos to the required 10-year minimum for each of the six counts of first-degree assault with extreme indifference, to be served consecutively. He was also sentenced to the required minimum of five years for each of the 10 counts of attempted first-degree assault with extreme indifference, also to be served consecutively.
The judge said the law required him to order those sentences to be served consecutively.
"In all victim impact statements I read, I did not glean from them someone saying, 'He should be in prison for the rest of his life, and he should never, ever get out," Jones said at the sentencing. "Far from it. There was forgiveness reflected in those statements, but also a desire that he be punished and serve time in prison, and I share those sentiments."
> Watch the judge's sentencing in the video below
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