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San Francisco Crime Records Highlight Deadly Dangers of Sanctuary Cities

Kathryn Steinle was the 32 year-old woman who was walking with her father on a pier in San Francisco on July 1 just before she was gunned down by an illegal alien criminal released by San Francisco authorities under that city’s sanctuary policies. We live in a cruel, dangerous world riddled with crime. That’s the hard reality. But certainly, elected officials could move decisively if they wanted to against “Sanctuary Cities” and the dangerous criminal aliens who fly under the law. “Criminal illegal alien” may sound redundant; that’s how our government describes illegal aliens who have committed serious offenses on top of their immigration violation.

Juan Francisco Lopez-Sanchez, the illegal alien charged with murder in Steinle’s death, had already been convicted of seven felonies and deported five times. San Francisco, in pursuit of a policy that flouts the rule of law, set in motion the chain of events that led to Kathryn Steinle’s murder.

Judicial Watch forced new records out of San Francisco that strongly suggest that Steinle is but one of dozens of murder victims tied to San Francisco’s sanctuary policies. Documents JW obtained from the San Francisco County Sheriff’s Department reveal that violent crime has skyrocketed since 2011, with the number of arrests for murder up 55% and the number of arrests for rapes up 370%. Judicial Watch’s investigators uncovered these shocking, though not entirely surprising, numbers through a July 9, 2015, California Public Records Act request that sought the number of arrests for violations of the following crimes between 2011 and 2015:

Penal Code 187 – first and second degree murder

Penal Code 240 – simple assault

Penal Code 243 – battery

Penal Code 261 – rape

According to the data provided by the Sheriff’s Department, arrests for violations of the most violent of the crimes listed – murder and rape – have soared over the past four years:

Murder (Penal Code 187) Simple Assault (Penal Code 240) Battery (Penal Code 243) Rape (Penal Code 261)
2011 87 99 1600 10
2012 101 76 1501 45
2013 128 95 1592 45
2014 135 93 1516 47
2015 78 54 908 23
Total 529 417 7117 170

According to the information provided to our team by Sheriff’s Department Assistant Legal Counsel Mark Nicco, “These numbers reflect the number of charges for arrests and bookings (not just arrests).”

In response to a request for details on the U.S. citizenship status of the offenders, Nicco informed Judicial Watch, “This information is not tracked by the Jail Management System.” But Kathryn Steinle’s murder shows that the number is at least “1.”

It is disconcerting that SF authorities do not want to track the crimes of the illegal aliens they surreptitiously and illegally let loose on an innocent public.

As bad as these numbers are, they are only the tip of the iceberg. Despite the increased arrests for violent crimes, the overall arrest rate has plunged by 42 percent, according to Max Szabo, spokesman for the San Francisco District Attorney’s Office. More crimes, less arrests – thanks in no small measure directly to public official lawlessness.

In 2013, the San Francisco Sheriff and City Council expanded San Francisco’s infamous illegal alien sanctuary policies. The City changed policies and passed an ordinance that required San Francisco law enforcement to ignore most U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) detainers. These detainers required San Francisco authorities to hold detained illegal alien criminals until federal authorities could determine whether to take them into custody.

Citizens, and even some politicians, understand that when San Francisco and other sanctuary cities release illegal alien criminals onto the streets, crime is going to increase. These new crime statistics suggest there are more murders and an epidemic of rape linked to San Francisco’s release of illegal alien criminals in violation of law.

Judicial Watch is a long-time national leader in advocating for a rule-of-law approach to illegal immigration. This work includes exposing and challenging dangerous sanctuary policies in San Francisco, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Washington, D.C., Maryland, Arizona, Los Angeles, Chicago, Houston, and more.

In 2011, because of Judicial Watch’s work, San Francisco was ordered to end its sanctuary policy, which protected aliens arrested for certain drug offenses from being reported to ICE. Our legal and investigative teams are now investigating whether the city violated the law again with its sanctuary policy that led to the release of Lopez-Sanchez. We will keep fighting while the federal government continues to fall down on the job.

Another lawsuit pending before the Illinois Supreme Court challenges Chicago’s Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart’s refusal to honor ICE immigration detainers or cooperate with ICE in identifying deportable criminal aliens. Cook County jails had released well over 1,000 criminal aliens sought by ICE in the 18 months prior to the lawsuit’s filing in 2013.

Recall that San Francisco is one of hundreds of sanctuary cities. And certainly, Obama’s refusal to enforce (and violate) immigration law has turned America into a sanctuary nation. For example, other Judicial Watch litigation forced the release of documents that show the Obama administration released 165,900 convicted criminal aliens throughout the United States, including many convicted of such violent crimes as homicide, sexual assault, kidnapping, and aggravated assault.

We will keep fighting to get and spread the truth and challenging the lawless in courts where we can. But you can see there is urgency to this issue – as lives are at stake.

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