Most Florida residents may assume that if they call police upon seeing intruders on their property, officers will be dispatched to investigate their situations. This is apparently what a man living in another state thought when he placed a recent call for help. However, instead of obtaining the assistance he was seeking, he wound up being arrested and handed over to U.S. immigration law officers.
The bizarre situation unfolded in the wee hours of a recent Thursday morning. The man, who happens to be an immigrant from Honduras, noticed someone on his property he did not know. As most people would do in such situations, he called police to report the suspicious person.
Within an hour, officers showed up at his home; however, instead of investigating the reported possible intruder incident, they instead arrested the man who had called them. The immigrant was then handed over to ICE officials. Police reportedly felt badly about the situation, later issuing a public statement saying officers had mistaken a warrant that came through as a criminal arrest warrant. In fact, it was merely an administrative warrant from ICE.
A police spokesperson assured immigrants in the area that the department would not be responding to such warrants in the future and that no immigrant should be afraid of calling police for help. Since the man in this particular situation called for help and now faces serious U.S. immigration law problems, it might take more than a public statement to alleviate others’ fears. Any Florida resident facing immigration detention problems or other legal status issues may call on an experienced attorney for support.
Source: ajc.com, “Immigrant detained by ICE after calling police for help“, Deedee Sun, Feb. 11, 2018