Rosa Maria Hernandez, a 10-year-old child with cerebral palsy who was detained by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) while she was hospitalized after receiving emergency surgery, is no longer in a detention center near San Antonio, Texas, according to the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU).
The ACLU represented the child and filed a lawsuit against the Trump administration claiming that she and her family’s due process rights were violated as they were not given a chance to have their case heard before a judge after being detained, as the law states. In this case, the definition of due process in the Fifth Amendment, which “entitles a parent to a hearing on [his/her] fitness as a parent before [his/her] children [are] taken from [them],” is what was being questioned, as stated by the ACLU.
Hernandez might be out of the detention center but her fate is still uncertain.
— Joaquin Castro (@JoaquinCastrotx) November 3, 2017
“The Trump administration has not made clear whether they will proceed with deportation proceedings against her,” Rep. Joaquin Castro, who champions immigration rights and has condemned the actions of the president and ICE throughout this case, wrote in a statement. “I continue to call for Rosa Maria’s case to be administratively closed. Moving forward, we must address the Trump Administration’s callous actions. The United States should not be a place where children seeking life-sustaining medical care are at risk of apprehension.”
Hernandez spent over a week in a detention center after being arrested while recovering from gall bladder surgery. Border Patrol agents waited outside of her hospital room to detain her and began deportation proceedings as soon as physically possible, sparking outrage by immigration activists and some of the American public. The 10-year-old undocumented immigrant was detained after receiving life-saving surgery at Driscoll Children’s Hospital in Corpus Christi, Texas. Hernandez was in an ambulance with a cousin who is a U.S. citizen when the ambulance was stopped at a border checkpoint on route to the hospital.
Hernandez’s case is the second highly publicized case of detainments at a border checkpoint on the way to Driscoll Children’s Hospital in Corpus Christi. Previously, an undocumented couple with a U.S.-born child who needed emergency surgery was stopped at the checkpoint. The parents agreed to be detained so their son could be taken to the hospital to get the help he needed. Both parents are facing deportation proceedings.