Howard v. The City and County of Denver, Colorado

To be released from jail in Denver, a person must pay the bond and the bond fee. Payment of the bond alone is insufficient to secure the release. There are many other fees charged to criminal defendants, including a booking fee, but failure to pay these does not result in the defendant being jailed. The only mandatory fee is the bond fee. Further, Denver does not automatically refund the booking fee for defendants who are not convicted. They have to submit paperwork for the refund. The Denver Sheriff’s Office takes the money from the arrestee for the booking fee even if the arrestee needed to use it for the bond.


The parties stipulated and agreed to the dismissal of the action, with prejudice.

You can read the full text of the complaint here, and find more information via the ACLU of Colorado.

42 USC § 1983 (alleging due process and equal protection violations)
4:2017-cv-00606 (N.D. Ok. 2017)
October 2018
ACLU of Colorado