A few weeks ago, an undocumented couple headed down to Mission Bay one evening with their 14-year-old daughter, a U.S. citizen. They were pulled over by sheriff’s deputies for what the officers said was a cracked windshield.
Neither the wife nor the husband were charged with any crimes or given citations. But they both ended up in the hands of immigration officials. One is still detained today, and the other is out on bond.
How’d that happen in a county whose sheriff’s department says it prohibits deputies from stopping, detaining or questioning people for reasons related to immigration? In a new article, our Mario Koran looks into the case and finds dramatically conflicting stories about exactly what happened and why.
“In dispute is whether Sheriff’s deputies violated department policy by bringing in federal immigration agents,” Koran writes. The department says it didn’t do anything wrong because it technically didn’t ask about the couple’s immigration status — officers called Border Patrol to “inquire into the frequency of border crossings made by the subjects detained.”
But a sheriff’s commander who wants to replace Sheriff Bill Gore says the interaction did indeed violate policy: “there were no arrests made and no citations issued. These people should have been on their way. There was no reason to contact Border Patrol.”
City Officials Ponder a Place Where the Homeless Can Legally Go
Cops have been cracking down on the homeless, but permanent homes and even shelter space are scarce. What is a homeless person supposed to do besides get on a bus to a friendlier place, wherever that is?