Lawmakers highlight crimes as ‘sanctuary’ policy rolls out

Travis County Correctional Facility (Courtesy: TCSO)
Travis County Correctional Facility (Courtesy: TCSO)

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Travis County will not honor an immigration detainer request for a suspect in an Austin sexual assault case, according to online jail records.

A grand jury indicted Jose Carranza-Rubio for sexual assault. He would still have to pay toward his $75,000 bond to get out of jail. Even then, Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials could take him into custody, the jail simply would not hold Carranza-Rubio in their facility.

Protesters marched at the Capitol Wednesday. Marilu Frucutuoso says her son was arrested in San Antonio after police saw he had a light out on his car. She says he was detained for three months by immigration officials. However, she says his wife is a U.S. citizen and he was eventually released.

“[We experienced] lot of sadness, pain,” she said. “This has affected us a lot because he got sick with depression and anxiety. It has affected us a lot emotionally and economically.”

State leaders pointed to immigrants accused of crimes from sexual assault to murder.

A study published by a progressive think tank found, “Crime is lower and economies are stronger in sanctuary counties compared to non-sanctuary counties.” Another researcher with the University of California concluded that “…sanctuary policies have no effect on crime rates, despite narratives to the contrary.”

State lawmakers say undocumented immigrants are committing crimes and counties need to work with immigration officials to deport them.

“The problem is simply this, from a numbers perspective, there’s been over 210,000 criminal illegal aliens processed in Texas jails since June 1, 2011,” said State Sen. Paul Bettencourt, R-Houston.

To put that in perspective county jails process about a million jail bookings each year, according to state data.

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