DENVER (KDVR) — Gov. Jared Polis wants Coloradans to know that “the punishment fits the crime” in the Centennial State.
FOX31’s Vicente Arenas spoke with the governor after two Colorado district attorneys warned Polis that he set a “troubling precedent” when he intervened in the Rogel Aguilera-Mederos case.
“This was a problem of their own creation by pursuing a charge that didn’t make sense – 110 years,” Polis said.
District attorneys Michael Dougherty and Daniel Rubenstein said in a letter they agreed that the 110-year sentence in the deadly interstate crash “was too severe.”
“I’m just a problem solver. We fixed it. We made it consistent with every other penalty in Colorado. Nobody is even defending the 110-year sentence. Not even the DAs in the letter,” Polis said.
Citing that there were different ways to fix the issue of Aguilera-Mederos’ extensive sentence, Polis stands by his decision.
“Bottom line is we restored confidence in the justice system, putting a normal sentence for a horrific horrific traffic accident based on poor decisions and reckless driving,” Polis said.
Aguilera-Mederos was convicted of 27 counts in October 2021 for a fiery Interstate 70 crash that killed four people in 2019. His 110-year sentence was the result of mandatory minimum sentencing laws that apply to crimes of violence, or any offense in which a person is killed or suffers serious bodily injury.
“At the end of the day, we had the opportunity and legal authority. We simply said let’s make this consistent with other penalties. That will help make sure that people know that the punishment fits the crime in Colorado,” the governor said.
Polis dropped Aguilera-Mederos’ sentence to 10 years on Dec. 30, 2021.