Texas law enforcement officers placed more than 243,000 criminal aliens in jails across the state since 2011. Those criminal aliens were accused of nearly 650,000 state or local criminal offenses.
A report published by the Texas Department of Public Safety reveals the alarming statistics surrounding crimes committed by foreign nationals who are living in the state either legally or illegally. More than 644,000 crimes were alleged to have been committed by foreign nationals residing in the Lone Star State from June 1, 2011, to January 31, 2018. Those charges include: 18,256 burglary charges; 77,381 drug charges; 780 kidnapping charges; 43,900 theft charges; 49,535 obstructing police charges; 4,210 robbery charges; 6,951 sexual assault charges; and 9,653 weapon charges officials stated. Of that total, 66 percent (162,000) were committed by illegal aliens.
The 644,000 charges resulted in 288,000 criminal convictions. Officials reported that those convictions included 191,000 crimes committed by illegal aliens.
The reported convictions include charges of:
- 556 homicide convictions;
- 28,878 assault convictions;
- 8,975 burglary convictions;
- 37,920 drug convictions;
- 271 kidnapping convictions; 1
- 9,943 theft convictions;
- 24,252 obstructing police convictions;
- 2,181 robbery convictions;
- 3,207 sexual assault convictions;
- and 4,006 weapon convictions.
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) officers regularly place immigration on those illegal aliens who are either charged or convicted of crimes in Texas. In most county jails, Texas sheriff’s fully cooperate with these immigration detainers.
However, in January 2017, the newly elected sheriff in Travis County (Austin), Sally Hernandez, announced she would be ending her county’s prior policies of full cooperation with immigration officials, Breitbart Texas reported.
Dubbed “Sanctuary Sally” by her opponent during her election campaign, Sheriff Hernandez announced she would deliver a campaign promise to end the policy that allowed immigration officers to work inside the county’s jail.
“I just don’t think you solve the criminal justice process by deporting them,” Hernandez told The Texas Tribune during a sit-down interview in her office in September 2016. “We talk about being progressive. I believe we need to lead the way.”
Just a few weeks later, Sheriff Hernandez’ office led the nation in releasing criminal aliens on whom ICE officers had placed an immigration hold. Of the 206 total criminal aliens released by sanctuary jurisdictions across the country between January 28 and February 3, 2017, Travis County alone accounted for 149 inmates listed in the report.
Following the backlash against the sheriff following the release of the ICE report, Sheriff Martinez announced she would review her policy of releasing violent criminal aliens on the streets of the State’s capital city. Governor Greg Abbott responded that her “review” was “not good enough.” He tweeted a message stating that her sanctuary policy “must end.”
Governor Abbott responded quickly to her announcement. “As sheriff, your primary duty is to ensure the safety of the residents of Travis County,” Abbott wrote in a letter to Sheriff Hernandez. “However, your recent policy directive forbidding Travis County Sherriff’s Office (TCSO) employees from cooperating with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) (except in the most limited of circumstances) betrays your oath and the residents of Travis County.
The governor penalized the county by stripping an estimated $1.8 million in state law enforcement grants.
Failing to be dissuaded by the financial penalty, the sheriff released an additional 39 criminal aliens from her jail in February.
The governor made ending local sanctuary jurisdiction policies an emergency item in his 2017 State of the State speech before the Texas Legislature. State Senator Charles Perry promptly filed what has now become the toughest law in the nation against sanctuary cities (SB4). Governor Abbott signed the bill into law on May 8, 2017.
“All law enforcement officers are going to be required to follow this law,”Abbott told Breitbart Texas in an exclusive interview immediatly after signing the bill into law. “If they refuse to follow this law, or if they adopt sanctuary city policies, they are subject now to the stiffest penalties in America for adopting sanctuary city policies – which includes jail time where sheriffs could wind up in the same jail they may be releasing inmates from who are the subject of ICE detainer requests.”
“But these officials also are subject to a removal action,” he advised, “and the counties or cities in which they operate are subject to very stiff fines.” The governor said these fines can go up to $25,000 per day. The law makes ignoring an immigration detainer a Class A misdemeanor, Breitbart Texas reported.
Sheriff Hernandez appears to have halted her controversial practice of releasing violent criminal aliens from her jail following the effective date of the law.
However, in January 2018, San Antonio Chief of Police William McManus came under fire after he released a group of illegal immigrants who were being smuggled in the back of a tractor-trailer. He released the migrants before ICE officials could take custody and said the human smuggler would be prosecuted under state law.
The president of the San Antonio Police Officer Association called for his department’s chief to be placed on administrative leave after he released 12 illegal aliens being smuggled in an 18-wheeler in December, Breitbart Texas reported.
In a letter to the San Antonio City Council obtained by Breitbart Texas, San Antonio Police Officers Association President Michael Helle said he believes Chief McManus may have “violated state or federal laws.” This is in addition to what he described as “obvious violations of the general manual.”
On January 11, Texas Lt. Governor Dan Patrick asked the Texas Attorney General to look into the matter as a possible violation of the SB4 sanctuary law. Later that day, Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton’s office confirmed to Breitbart Texas that it had received a criminal complaint on the matter and had launched an investigation.
“Our office has received multiple complaints alleging that the San Antonio police chief violated Senate Bill 4, the Texas law prohibiting sanctuary city policies that the attorney general has authority to enforce,” OAG spokesman Mark Rylander said in response to an inquiry from Breitbart Texas. “We have begun our investigation and demanded that the San Antonio Police Department preserve all of its records relating to the incident.”
The AG Ken Paxton’s office also sent a letter to the City of San Antonio demanding the preservation of any evidence that might be related to the case.
“Several citizens have filed complaints with the Texas Attorney General’s Office regarding an incident on December 23 involving the release of numerous suspected illegal aliens,” Assistant Texas Attorney General Cleve W. Doty wrote in the letter (attached below) which is also addressed to the San Antonio Police Department, City Council, City Manager Sheryl Sculley, City Attorney Andy Segovia, Mayor Ron Nirenberg, and Police Chief William McManus.
“The Texas Attorney General’s Office will investigate these complaints and the procedure in Senate Bill 4 contemplates litigation,” Doty continued. “We demand that you affirmatively preserve all relevant materials.”
Breitbart Texas also learned that a San Antonio City Council member asked the U.S. Department of Justice to look into the matter to determine if McManus violated any federal laws.
“We finally have a higher authority looking into the chief’s conduct,” San Antonio Police Officers Association President Mike Helle told Breitbart Texas following the Texas AGs announcement. “That is a good thing.”