Jail will no longer house ICE suspects
LAS CRUCES, N.M. (KTSM) — Doña Ana County Detention Center will no longer honor ICE detainers, according to the Paso del Norte Civil Rights Project.
An ICE detainer is a request to a local detention center asking them to hold a person for immigration purposes.
It's voluntary and the decision is made at the local level.
The civil rights group claims the changes in Doña Ana county were made after a lawsuit involving two sisters who were imprisoned for two months and not allowed to post bond because of the ICE detainers against them.
It was later discovered that the sisters were not deportable, but they lost their jobs and had to drop out of college because they were held behind bars for so long.
The county settled the lawsuit with the sisters.
"Once the county heard that, they made the choice to say 'no more, we're not going to honor these ICE detainers.' It has serious consequences in our community," said PDNCRP attorney Jed Untereker.
Doña Ana county's decision is not an isolated one.
Nationally, nearly 120 local and state municipalities restrict those ICE detainers.