Local Politicians (Not Obama) Creating Sanctuary Cities in Middle America

Article author: 
Tom Tancredo
Article publisher: 
Article date: 
14 February 2016
Article category: 
Our American Future
Article Body: 

It’s not news that the Obama administration has been deporting fewer and fewer criminal aliens each year, but it’s your local sheriff, mayor and city council who are turning thousands loose into the community before federal immigration officials even get a chance to deport them...

Under new rules adopted by Obama’s Department of Homeland Security in November of 2014, only the most violent criminal aliens are subject to a deportation hearing, not every convicted felon. Illegal aliens who merely commit non-violent crimes like burglary, auto theft and multiple DUI’s are not deported. They are free to continue their life of crime—until  they DO commit a violent crime, and even then it’s not a sure thing...

This is happening not only in liberal-left fortresses like Los Angeles, New York and Atlanta. Add Denver, Las Vegas, and Miami to the list—along with Red State urban centers including Dallas and Tucson, and four counties in Nebraska. Four entire states are considered Sanctuary States—Connecticut, California, New Mexico and Colorado, where every single one of its 64 counties now refuses to honor ICE detainers...

There are two separate problems with the release of criminal aliens, one federal and one local:

  • There are over 900,000 illegal aliens in the country who have had their day in court and have been issued a Final Order of Deportation — but not apprehended.
  • They are criminals and if arrested for another crime, the federal immigration enforcement agency, “ICE,” will send a detainer request to the local jail asking the person be held for pickup by ICE. Sanctuary cities are refusing to honor that request.
  • But even if in ICE custody, tens of thousands of criminal aliens are released and not deported because they are not violent felons.

The release of criminal aliens by local officials who refuse to honor ICE detainers is the second problem.

  • From January 2014 through June of 2015, a period of only 18 months, 17,000 criminal aliens were released by local law enforcement officials who declined to hold the individual for 48 hours until ICE could pick them up.
  • One-fourth of them were previously convicted felons.
  • 1,900 of them were rearrested 4,300 times within that 18-month period.

If you ask your local sheriff or police chief how many of over 6,000 re-arrests of criminal aliens in 2014-2015 happened in your city or county, they won’t be able to tell you. Why? Because local officials do not want to keep track of those arrests...

In one state, Colorado, over 3,000 criminal aliens were released from custody in 2014 instead of being deported, but no law enforcement agency in the state can tell you how many crimes have been committed by those individuals since their release...

A new report released this past week by the Center for Immigration Studies has this to say:

The problem is that recalcitrant state legislatures and city and county councils have erected barriers to such cooperation. Likewise, many sheriffs and police chiefs have adopted rules that render the jobs of federal agents much more difficult by refusing to honor immigration detainers and declining to notify agents of arrests or the release dates of aliens...

If you believe the problem is only a consequence of Obama’s policies, consider the life and death of the “Secure Communities Program” (SCP) operated by the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency (ICE) from 2008 to 2014.

  • Obama killed program because it was too successful, and no state legislature or governor protested his action.
  • The SCP required that for every single arrest resulting in a jail booking, the finger prints of the arrestee had to be sent to BOTH the FBI and ICE to be checked against its list of illegal aliens. The local jail was then notified of finger print matches – but local law enforcement had the option to ignore the information or to act on it.
  • But even that very permissive, flexible program was too much for local open borders advocates, so they lobbied the Obama administration to kill it—and local law enforcement did not object to its political assassination...


CAIRCO Research

Priority Enforcement Program (PEP) and Secure Communities Program

287(g) program

Crime and illegal aliens in Colorado

Crime and illegal aliens in the U.S.

Sanctuary Cities in Colorado and the Sanctuary City of Denver