On Tuesday, despite the murder of a woman that was allegedly committed by an illegal immigrant who had been released under the county’s sanctuary policy, the Santa Clara, California, County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously to retain the policy.
As The Washington Times reported, on February 28, 59-year-old Bambi Larson was stabbed to death in her home. Roughly two weeks later, Carlos Eduardo Arevalo-Carranza, an illegal immigrant from El Salvador, was arrested and booked into the Santa Clara County jail for her murder.
Santa Clara County’s policy means immigration authorities are not notified when illegal immigrants are released from jail. County Counsel James R. Williams defended the policy in March, saying, “ICE should’ve gotten a warrant here. They could’ve gotten a warrant here. And the county’s practice has always been to honor warrants that are issued.” San Jose Police Chief Eddie Garcia slammed the policy, asserting that it is used to “shield admitted gangsters or violent criminals.”
San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo stated, “What we are all urging, is when the county has a predatory or violent person, they notify authorities if he will be released into the community. No court has ever deemed that kind of notification to be unconstitutional.” He added, “I’m no defender of ICE or proponent of this administration…but I fail to understand how one can justify releasing a predatory felon without giving federal authorities the chance to arrest him and keep him out of the community. That small number is responsible for, in this case, horrible acts of violence.”
NBC News reported:
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement said agents tried to deport Carranza nine times before, but their detainer requests were not honored in Los Angeles and Santa Clara counties, both so-called “sanctuary cities.” In every occasion, local authorities declined to cooperate with a federal request to hold Carranza in jail due to his immigration status — as is often the policy with “sanctuary cities” and counties — and he was released back on the street.
Erik Bonnar, an acting field office director for ICE, said after Arevalo-Carranza was arrested:
How many more people have to be killed or injured before California lawmakers will open discussions to revise the state policy prohibiting local law enforcement agencies from working with ICE to apprehend dangerous criminal aliens? It’s unfortunate that our communities face dangerous consequences because of inflexible state laws that protect criminal aliens. These sanctuary policies have unintended, but very real, and often tragic consequences to public safety.
Paul Kelly, president of the San Jose Police Officers’ Association, stated, “Notifying our federal law enforcement partners of the upcoming release of those individuals with a proven record of violent criminal behavior is the right thing to do.”