CHARLOTTE, N.C. – U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) launched a billboard campaign this past week in Charlotte to educate the public about the dangers of non-cooperation policies. The billboards feature at-large immigration violators who may pose a public safety threat. These individuals were previously arrested or convicted of crimes in the U.S. but were released into the community instead of being transferred to ICE custody pursuant to an immigration detainer.
“Too often sanctuary policies limiting cooperation with ICE result in significant public safety concerns because they release dangerous individuals back into the community we are attempting to protect,” said Senior Official Performing the Duties of the Director Tony H. Pham. “ICE will continue to enforce immigration laws set forth by Congress through the efforts of the men and women of ICE to remove criminal aliens and making our communities safer.”
The billboards are located at or near:
- I-85 .8 miles north of Billy Graham Parkway
- I-277 (949 Brookshire Freeway) 150 feet east of Hamilton Street
- I-485 .2 miles east of Dixie River Road
- I-485 .2 miles west of Nations Ford Road
- I-77 .3 mile south of Arrowood Road
ICE lodges immigration detainers on individuals who have been arrested on local criminal charges and who are suspected of being removable, so that ICE can take custody of that person when he or she is released from local custody. When law enforcement agencies fail to honor immigration detainers and release serious criminal offenders onto the streets, it undermines ICE’s ability to protect public safety and carry out its mission.
The billboards feature cases like:
Paul Chander Evans, 26, a Jamaican national illegally present in the U.S. Evans was arrested by the Charlotte Mecklenburg Police Department Oct. 6 for assault on a female, felony breaking and entering, communicating threats and other charges. ICE lodged a detainer with the Mecklenburg County Jail, but due to their sanctuary policies, detainers have not been honored, and the subject was released to the community.
Andres Bautista-Alcantara, 29, a Dominican national illegally present in the U.S. Bautista-Alcantara was arrested by the Charlotte Mecklenburg Police Department Sept. 9 for two counts of 2nd degree forcible rape and violation of a domestic violence protection order. ICE lodged a detainer with the Mecklenburg County Jail, but due to their sanctuary policies, detainers have not been honored, and the subject was released to the community.
Omar Palomo-Garcia, 25, a Mexican national illegally present in the U.S. Palomo-Garcia was arrested by the Charlotte Mecklenburg Police Department March 28 for assault on a female, felony cocaine possession and drug paraphernalia. ICE lodged a detainer, with the Mecklenburg County Jail, but due to their sanctuary policies, detainers have not been honored, and the subject was released to the community.
The public should call ICE at 866-DHS-2-ICE (866-347-2423) if they have information to report about the whereabouts of an individual featured on one of the billboards.