Organization Claims Hernando County is Sanctuary for Illegal Aliens
HERNANDO – On the heels of a the recent tragedy in San Francisco involving the shooting death of 32-year-old Kathryn Steinle, dozens of counties and cities around the nation are now being called a sanctuary for illegal aliens.
According to a recent reports released by the Center for Immigration Studies, a non-profit research organization, 276 state and local jurisdictions adopted policies of non-compliance with some or all ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) detainers. These policies took the form of policies, laws, executive orders, or regulations. These jurisdictions were located in 43 states and the District of Columbia.
A detainer, as explained in the CIS article, is the primary tool used by ICE to take custody of criminal aliens for deportation. It is a notice to another law enforcement agency that ICE intends to assume custody of an alien, and it includes information on the alien’s previous criminal history, immigration violations, and potential risk to public safety or security.
Last year over 8800 retainers were refused by local agencies and out of those 2,984 had a prior felony conviction or charges, according to the report.
The CIS provided a map of all counties and cities they claim ignore federal immigration laws. Seven counties in Florida made the list, including Hernando, Pasco, Hillsborough, Pinellas, Miami-Dade, Broward, and Palm Beach.
We asked officials with the Hernando County Sheriff’s Office what they thought of the report and they responded this afternoon with the following statement:
This group bases their assertion on plain inaccuracies. First, this nonofficial group falsely labeled Hernando County as a sanctuary city due to the fact that we require probable cause supported by an affidavit or a warrant from a judge to hold a suspected alien. Upsetting to this organization is that we refuse to violate the United States or Florida Constitution’s in detaining any individual without probable cause as required by the Fourth Amendment. This measure is required to hold any person in a jail prior to sentencing or official charging. The website affiliated with this group labeled not only Hernando county as such, but also included Pasco, Pinellas and Hillsborough counties in the same fashion, for the same reason. The website crafted by this group is arbitrarily and capriciously expressing absolutely false, inaccurate and misleading information. The casual observer associates a sanctuary city with a city such as San Francisco, who is touted as having no regard whatsoever for immigration laws. To group Hernando County into the same category is reckless.
While the Center for Immigration Studies is entirely devoid of any authority to support their position and ultimately not a credible source, the Hernando County Sheriff’s Office’s position is deeply rooted in Constitutional law and supported with relevant case law. Pursuant to Galarza v. Szalczyk, 745 F.3d 634 (3d Cir.2014); Morales v. Chadbourne, C.A. No. 12–301–M, 2014 WL 554478 (D.R.I. Feb. 12, 2014); Miranda–Olivares v. Clackamas County., No. 3:12–CV–02317–ST, 2014 WL 1414305 (D.Or. Apr. 11, 2014) probable cause is required to detain or hold a suspected illegal alien in custody. Accordingly, if HCSO is presented with a sworn affidavit supported by probable cause from a federal or state agency or a duly executed warrant requesting detention, we steadfastly do so. To do otherwise would subject this county and its citizens to liability unnecessarily. The cases cited above all resulted in local agency liability because detention of such individuals occurred based solely on an ICE detainer request which was not supported by probable cause.
Furthermore, if you look more into the issue, I believe you find that most, if not all Sheriff’s offices handle these situations in exactly the same manner – Even those that are not listed on this website.
CIS Sanctuary Map: http://cis.org/Sanctuary-Cities-Map
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