NewsCovering Colorado


Raising of Mexican flag during Colorado ICE protest sparks outrage from rally organizers, DA

Posted at 2:58 PM, Jul 14, 2019

AURORA — It's not what organizers of the Lights for Liberty Vigil wanted to see.

During a protest in front of the Aurora ICE detention facility Friday, a small group from around 2,000 protesters pulled down the American flag and raised the Mexican flag and an upside-down American flag with an anti-police slogan spray-painted on it.

"I'm a bit devastated," Cristian Solana-Cordova of the Colorado Immigrant Rights Coalition said. "I'm let down by these people who basically took the mic away from our community leaders so they could pose for a selfie, essentially to show off on Instagram just how woke they are."

Friday's rally at the privately run facility, which contracts with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, was in response to potential ICE raids this weekend in Denver and the treatment of immigrants at detention camps across the country.

"It was revolting," 18th District Attorney George Brauchler said.

Brauchler is among those who saw what happened on social media Saturday morning and wants to see the people who did it held responsible.

"It's not freedom of speech to trespass on land," Brauchler said. "It's not freedom of speech to take down an American flag or Colorado flag that you don't own. Lawlessness is not freedom of speech."

Colorado's governor responded on social media as well, condemning the acts but continued his disapproval of the raids.

Aurora police say the decision to not intervene at the time was based on protecting the safety at large and not escalating the situation.

But the acts of a few took away the message the main group wanted.

"We definitely want to see that person or persons to be brought to justice for their despicable and disgusting actions," Solana-Cordova added.