Investigation: Violent Crime Spikes in Counties that Ended Police Program Turning Illegal Aliens over to ICE

In this July 8, 2019, photo, a U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officers esc
AP Photo/Gregory Bull

Violent crime increased in two North Carolina counties that ended their police program that helped more easily turn criminal illegal aliens over to the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agency for arrest and deportation, an investigation finds.

The Immigration Reform Law Institute (IRLI) reviewed records in Mecklenburg County and Wake County, North Carolina — both of which ended their 287(g) agreements with ICE in December 2018 after a decade of cooperation with the federal agency.

The 287(g) program allows local law enforcement agencies to sign agreements with ICE to seamlessly identify criminal illegal aliens and turn them over to federal agents for arrest and deportation.

From 2018 to 2019, the IRLI investigation finds, Mecklenburg County saw a rise in every violent crime category — including murder, rape, robbery, and aggravated assault. In Wake County, during the same period, overall violent crime increased.

“If the goal is to make communities safer, canceling 287(g) agreements is one of the worst things elected leaders can do,” IRLI Executive Director Dale Wilcox said in a statement.

“The reduction in custody transfers allows these aliens to re-enter the community and the opportunity to commit additional crimes,” Wilcox said. “Anti-borders sheriffs who are campaigning against 287(g) need to be held accountable by their constituents for this reckless abandonment of their core responsibilities.”

Likewise, the counties are likely allowing many criminal illegal aliens to walk free instead of having them turned over to ICE agents.

After Mecklenburg County ended its 287(g) agreement with ICE, the federal agency lodged just 42 requests with local law enforcement to have criminal illegal aliens transferred to their custody. This is the lowest rate of requests since fiscal year 2007 and far below the nearly 540 requests sent in fiscal year 2018.

The number of ICE requests fell even more in Wake County after local officials ended their 287(g) agreement. In fiscal year 2018, for example, nearly 1,600 requests were sent by ICE to have criminal illegal aliens transferred to their custody. After the agreement ended, only two requests were made.

This year, Wake County is set for a similar trajectory, the investigation states. So far, just one criminal illegal alien has been requested for ICE transfer, indicating that this year could mark the lowest number of transfers in the county on record.

House and Senate Democrats in recent weeks have been lobbying President Joe Biden’s administration to end all of ICE’s 287(g) agreements so criminal illegal aliens can more easily evade deportation.

Already, Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas is preventing law enforcement agencies from turning over most criminal illegal aliens to ICE agents after they are arrested on local charges. With a series of “sanctuary country” orders, ICE agents are only allowed to arrest and deport illegal aliens who are recently convicted of aggravated felonies or are terrorists or known gang members.

As a result, reportedly thousands of criminal illegal aliens have been released into American communities who would have otherwise been deported. Those illegal aliens include sex offenders, as well as those convicted of armed robbery, drunk driving, and drug trafficking.

John Binder is a reporter for Breitbart News. Email him at Follow him on Twitter here.


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