In a move that’s drawn mixed reactions from the American populace, the Los Angeles Police Department will no longer follow immigration detainer requests issued by the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency without fair judicial review. The announcement of the new policy came on July 7 from Mayor Eric Garcetti, whose office also posted multiple times on Twitter regarding the new protocol to be upheld by the LAPD.
ICE hold requests occur after federal authorities cross check the fingerprints of locally arrested individuals with federal immigration databases. If they find a potential match and believe that the individual in custody may be an undocumented immigrant or have a warrant against them, agents can ask to have the person held for up to 48 hours. Historically, this time has given the federal agents a window in which they can pick up that individual and expedite them into deportation proceedings. Objections have been raised to this process across the country from immigration reform advocates who find the process unconstitutional. Garcetti indicated to the Los Angeles Times that he feels this process will be made far more fair through requiring a judicial review.
“The way it exists right now, you don’t even have to go to a judge,”Garcetti told the source. “It’s just an ICE office who says, ‘Hold that person’ – period. That no longer will be honored. Like most things, it will have to go through a judge.”
According to data kept internally, the LAPD makes roughly 105,000 arrests each year and receive ICE detainer requests for nearly 3,400 of them. Los Angeles joins multiple other cities in California and across the country in ruling not to honor ICE detainer requests any further, much to the satisfaction of immigration reform advocates. Steve Soboroff, president of the Los Angeles Police Commission, indicated that the move is one based in reluctance to offer differential treatment to any arrested persons simply at the request of the federal government.
“The idea of the government calling and saying, ‘Hold him another 48 hours for this specific purpose,'” Soboroff told KNX 1070 News Radio. “To me, I would like not to do that.”