A woman in L.A said that her husband was detained by immigration agents on Saturday and she had to drive herself to the hospital to give birth.
Maria del Carmen Venegas said she and her husband, Joel Arrona Lara, were on the way to the hospital Wednesday when they had stopped for gas in San Bernardino, just east of Los Angeles. From there Arrona Lara was detained by ICE.
Surveillance footage from the gas station shows two vehicles immediately pull up on the couple’s van after they just pull in. Agents with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement then question the couple and asked for identification, Venegas said.
Venegas said she drove herself to the hospital for a scheduled cesarean section for the birth of her fifth child.
“I feel terrible,” Venegas said in a telephone interview from the hospital as her newborn son Damian cried in the background.
“We need him now more than ever,” she said.
Venegas said she and her husband came to the U.S. 12 years ago from the city of Leon in the central Mexican state of Guanajuato. They do not have legal authorization to live in the U.S., and all five of their children are U.S. citizens, she said.
Venegas said her husband is a hard worker and the sole provider of the family.
Now what a lot of people on social media have failed to mention and most mainstream media outlets have left out of their reports is U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials said the man Customs because he was wanted on an outstanding arrest warrant in a homicide case in Mexico.
ICE said their agents that are part of the agency’s Fugitive Operations Team detained Arrona on Wednesday and said he remained there in custody pending removal proceedings.
Though the Fugitive Operations Team prioritizes arresting immigrants who are transnational gang members, child sex offenders and those who’ve had previous convictions for violent crimes, ICE’s statement said it “will no longer exempt classes or categories of removable aliens from potential enforcement.”
“All of those in violation of the immigration laws may be subject to immigration arrest, detention and, if found removable by final order, removal from the United States,” the statement said.
Director of the San Bernardino Community Service Center, Emilio Amaya Garcia, said his nonprofit group is providing legal help to Venegas and Arrona and will be filing a motion on Monday for an immigration court to set a bail hearing for Joel Arrona Lara and will ask that his removal proceedings Customs.