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Truck driver convicted in Colorado crash may get prison time cut

Prosecutor asks judge to reduce Rogel Aguilera-Mederos’ sentence by at least 80 years

A judge has scheduled a Jan. 13 hearing to reconsider the 110-year sentence of Rogel Aguilera-Mederos, a truck driver who was convicted in a 2019 accident that killed four people in Colorado.

In an unusual move, the resentencing hearing came at the request of 1st Judicial District Attorney Alexis King, the prosecutor in the case, who said her office will recommend a sentence of 20 to 30 years.

“This is an exceptional case, and it requires an exceptional process,” King said Monday during a press conference after a hearing before Judge A. Bruce Jones in Colorado. “In finding its verdict, the jury recognized the extreme nature of the defendant’s conduct, which warrants a prison sentence. The defendant caused the death of four people and serious bodily injury to two others, and the impact of his truck caused damage to many more in our community.”

Jones noted during Monday’s status hearing that the prosecution’s request for a reduced sentence was unusual, with reduced sentences usually called for by the defense.

“The people have done things under this statute that I don’t see any precedent for,” Jones said.

On April 25, 2019, Aguilera-Mederos, now 26, was driving a tractor-trailer on Interstate 70 outside of Denver when the truck lost its brakes coming out of the Rocky Mountains. The truck rammed into stopped traffic, causing a fiery 28-vehicle pileup that killed four people and injured six others.

Aguilera-Mederos was found guilty in October of four counts of vehicular homicide and 23 other charges. He was given a 110-year prison sentence under the guidelines set by Colorado law.

The sentence, which was handed down Dec. 13, has drawn public outcry with almost 5 million people signing a Change.org petition asking Colorado Gov. Jared Polis to reduce Aguilera-Mederos’ sentence or grant clemency.

Celebrity and criminal justice reform activist Kim Kardashian recently posted a series of tweets about the Aguilera-Mederos case, asking Polis to intervene.

“I pray that Governor Polis, who has been a leader on supporting reforms that increase human dignity in the legal system, will commute his sentence,” Kardashian tweeted

Click for more FreightWaves articles by Noi Mahoney.

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2 Comments

  1. This truck driver lost his brakes because he was riding his brakes until his brakes burnt up! He had the opportunity to use a runway for trucks who lose their brakes or any other reason that causes that they lose control. He chose not to do that for whatever reason. So I believe that he has to serve time for killing 4 and seriously injuring 6 others.

Noi Mahoney

Noi Mahoney is a Texas-based journalist who covers cross-border trade, logistics and supply chains for FreightWaves. He graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with a degree in English in 1998. Mahoney has more than 20 years experience as a journalist, working for newspapers in Florida, Maryland and Texas. Contact nmahoney@freightwaves.com