SANTA ANA (CBSLA) – President Donald Trump Wednesday morning offered his support for Orange County residents and public officials who are opposed to California’s controversial sanctuary state laws.
In a tweet, Mr. Trump said his “Administration stands in solidarity with the brave citizens in Orange County defending their rights against California’s illegal and unconstitutional Sanctuary policies.”
He went on: “California’s Sanctuary laws release known dangerous criminals into communities across the State. All citizens have the right to be protected by Federal law and strong borders.”
This comes after the O.C. Sheriff’s Department Tuesday, whose leadership opposes the new California sanctuary law that limits cooperation with federal immigration officials, announced it is now providing public information on when inmates are released from custody.
As of Monday an existing “Who’s in Jail” online database includes the date and time of inmates’ release, a move agency officials say will enhance communication with its law enforcement partners, the Orange County Register reported.
The release date information applies to all inmates, not just those who are suspected of being in the country illegally. But the goal is to assist agents with the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, or ICE.
“This is in response to SB-54 limiting our ability to communicate with federal authorities and our concern that criminals are being released to the street when there’s another avenue to safeguard the community by handing them over (to ICE for potential deportation),” said Orange County Undersheriff Don Barnes, according to the Register.
“Until the law is changed, we have to abide by it, but every aspect in there, including our ability to release to the public public information, such as release dates, it’s expressly detailed within the law,” Barnes told CBS2 News.
The council for the O.C. city of Los Alamitos voted last week to opt out of the sanctuary state status.
Last October, Gov. Jerry Brown signed Senate Bill 54, the sanctuary state legislation that extends protections for immigrants living in the United States illegally.
The bill took effect Jan. 1. Under it, police are barred from asking people about their immigration status or participating in immigration enforcement activities. Jail officials are only allowed to transfer inmates to federal immigration authorities if they have been convicted of certain crimes.
In early March, the Justice Department sued the state of California, alleging the three sanctuary state laws interfere with federal immigration activities and “intentionally obstruct and discriminate” against the enforcement of federal immigration law.
When President Trump visited San Diego earlier this month to look at border wall prototypes, he was critical of Brown.
“I think Gov. Brown has done a very poor job running California,” Trump said. “They have the highest taxes in the United States. The place is totally out of control. You have sanctuary cities where you have criminals living in the sanctuary cities. And then the mayor of Oakland goes out and notifies when ICE is going in to pick them up.”
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