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California counties say no to lengthy detentions of immigrants

When it comes to the view of law enforcement in our state, many people have mixed emotions. Most people hope that law enforcement will be on their side when it comes to serving justice -- and in fact they should because everyone is innocent until proven guilty. But this sentiment is often overshadowed by instances of an overreach of power and/or a clear violation of someone’s rights.

It’s because of this that some people are unable to trust the actions of law enforcement agencies. But agencies here in San Diego County, through their recent actions involving the detention of immigrants, may be rebuilding this trust with residents in the state again.

As some of our readers may remember, a federal court recently held a county in another state liable for holding an inmate past her release date so that she could be transferred into the custody of Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents. To avoid violating someone’s rights and facing the potentially lengthy litigation that can follow, law enforcement agencies here in California are actively refusing to honor requests made by federal immigration agents when it comes to detaining potentially deportable inmates.

The good news is that San Diego County is not the only county in California that is complying with the federal court’s ruling. So far San Bernardino, Los Angeles and Riverside County have also followed suit and are among the nearly 100 municipalities across the nation that are making it a point to challenge the ill-treatment of immigrant detainees.

Source: The Los Angeles Times, “Local, federal authorities at odds over holding some immigrant inmates,” Kate Linthucum, June 1, 2014

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