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LAPD To No Longer Comply With Feds On Immigration Hold Requests

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LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — The Los Angeles Police Department will no longer comply with federal immigration detainer requests issued without judicial review, Mayor Eric Garcetti announced Monday.

The Police Department will now only honor requests from Immigration and Customs Enforcement to keep someone in custody if there has been a judicial determination of probable cause or a warrant from a judicial officer, Garcetti said.

“The federal government is in charge of enforcing federal immigration laws, not us at the local level,” Garcetti said in a speech at City Hall. “That responsibility can’t be forced onto local law enforcement officials who already have stretched budgets.”

The Mayor’s office also took to social media with several tweets underscoring the policy announcement.

Police and city officials have been under pressure from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to hold on to illegal immigrants arrested for low-level crimes.

In October 2012, LAPD Chief Charlie Beck announced the LAPD would no longer grant an ICE Detainer Request “without first reviewing the seriousness of the offense for which the person is being held, as well as their prior arrest history and gang involvement.”

The move came after the City Attorney’s Office advised Beck that honoring requests made by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) were at the discretion of local police departments, Beck said at the time.

Beck voiced his support for Garcetti’s announcement on Twitter, saying “There’s nothing more important to a police department than community trust.”

Steve Soboroff, president of the Los Angeles Police Commission told KNX 1070 NEWSRADIO he and other officials remain reluctant to detain people solely due to their immigration status.

Police Commission Pres. Steve Soboroff

garcetti LAPD To No Longer Comply With Feds On Immigration Hold Requests
KNX 1070 NEWSRADIO

“The idea of having the government calling and saying, ‘Hold him another 48 hours for this specific purpose’, to me, I would like not to do that,” Soboroff said.

Police arrest about 105,000 people per year, and the LAPD receives ICE detainer requests for about 3,400 of them, according to police data.

Los Angeles police are the latest in a series of law enforcement agencies to stop honoring immigration detainers since a federal court ruling in Oregon found a woman’s constitutional rights were violated when she was held in jail without probable cause.

California had already moved to limit cooperation with immigration authorities on detainer requests under a law that took effect this year.

(TM and © Copyright 2014 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2014 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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