Things That Matter

ICE Terrorizes Nashville Community After Officer Shoots Man In Attempted Apprehension

The President and his government like to tell Americans that immigrants coming to the US are terrorizing neighborhoods. That an increase in migration is leading to increased crime rates and making us all less safe.

After a recent ICE involved shooting in Tennessee, many are calling BS on those claims. Between the storming of work places, separation of families, and now an alleged shooting, many are arguing that it is ICE that is terrorizing communities and making us all less safe.

In a severe escalation of violence, an ICE officer fired his gun at a man during an attempted apprehension.

ICE is accused of terrorizing a residential Nashville neighborhood in pursuit of an alleged undocumented immigrant. According to reports, ICE made a traffic stop of a white box truck in the parking lot of a local grocery store.

The vehicle came to a stop but as the officer approached the vehicle the man began to drive off. According to ICE and the FBI, the man drove in the direction of one of the ICE agents and this is when the ICE agent opened fire at the truck…again, in a grocery store parking lot in the middle of a residential neighborhood.

The man in the vehicle made no attempt at escalating the situation with the officers. According to The Tennessean, the man attempted to flee the arrest and, although that would be illegal, it’s no cause for an officer to fire his weapon and risk killing the suspect.

Following the shooting, the white truck was found abandoned and the man surrendered in a hospital.

Metro Nashville police confirmed the box truck was later found at Country Meadows mobile home park down the street from the grocery store but the driver was nowhere to be found. 

A local news helicopter showed the box truck had at least one bullet hole in the windshield.

The man made his way to a local hospital for medical treatment where he surrendered to police and was taken into custody.

By Friday, the man had been released from the hospital but it wasn’t clear where the man was.

He was released from the hospital Friday morning, his family’s attorney said.

The 39-year-old man from Veracruz, underwent surgery on Thursday night after being shot twice earlier in the day outside an Antioch Food Lion, Nashville-based immigration attorney Andrew Free said.

“He is in good health,” Free told The Tennessean Friday morning.

According to the FBI, the man hasn’t been arrested nor charged with a crime (which makes the fact that he was shot by ICE that much more shocking!). However, police are now investigation an attempted assault against a federal officer because of the man’s alleged attempt to drive towards the ICE officer in his attempt to flee the scene.

The city’s mayor, David Briley, issued the following statement regarding the shooting:

“The federal government’s inability to arrive at comprehensive immigration reform results in situations like what happened in Antioch this morning. This is exactly what we don’t want happening in our city. MNPD is no longer involved and has turned the scene over to the FBI. MNPD is currently looking for the victim of this shooting so that he may receive any needed medical assistance. My top priority remains the safety and well-being of all of the residents of Nashville.”

Briley recently signed an executive order calling lawmakers to repeal a state law banning sanctuary city policies — including local cooperation with federal immigration agents.

Local immigration advocates are speaking out against the attack.

Tennessee Immigrant and Refugee Rights Coalition (TIRRC) said the agent “could have killed” the man.

“ICE was trying to separate a man from his family yesterday, but they could have killed him. We are relieved that the day ended without further violence and that the man was able to receive life-saving medical care,” said Mary Kathryn Harcombe, Legal Director with the TIRRC said.

“We were deeply troubled by the way that early media reports allowed the ICE agents to frame their use of deadly force as self-defense. As videos and more information about the shooting surface, we demand that the investigation be thorough and impartial. The ICE agent who fired the gunshots should be held accountable for his excessive and unreasonable use of force,” Harcombe said.

Families in the area were terrified of the news.

TIRRC said “In the wake of yesterday’s shooting, we were fielding dozens of calls from Antioch residents, terrified that the ICE agents were still in the neighborhood conducting immigration enforcement. Teachers rode the school bus home with their students who lived in the area, uncertain if it was safe for them to return home,” said Camila Herrera, Services Director at TIRRC. “ICE is a rogue agency that is enforcing civil immigration law with shocking cruelty. ICE does not make our communities safer or stronger,” said Herrera.

Mexico Is Doing Trump’s Dirty Work: More Than 800 Migrants Are Detained, Most Of Whom Could Be Deported

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Mexico Is Doing Trump’s Dirty Work: More Than 800 Migrants Are Detained, Most Of Whom Could Be Deported

Alfredo Estrella / Getty

Mexico’s immigration policy is coming under increased scrutiny as another caravan of Central American migrants cross into the country. Mexico’s response has been condemned by many international migrant right’s organizations, as the country has come down hard on people attempting to seek asylum in the United States.

Mexico’s response included the use of tear gas and pepper spray to repel migrants who had attempted cross several bridges from Guatemala. The response left parents scrambling to find their terrified children, many of whom were lost in the crowds.

Mexico’s hardline approach is blamed on Trump’s pressure of Mexico to enact immigration policies that will prevent asylum seekers from ever reaching the US-Mexico border. Many are accusing Mexico’s President AMLO of being a coward as he bows to pressure from the United States.

Its been reported that more than 800 people from the migrant caravan have been detained by Mexican immigration authorities.

Credit: Alfredo Estrella / Getty

Immigration authorities have taken a tough stance against Central American migrants as they attempt to enter the country on their journey to the United States. So far, the country says that it has detained more than 800 migrants who have entered the country illegally from Guatemala.

The National Migration Institute (INM) said it had transferred 800 migrants, some of them unaccompanied minors, to immigration centers where they would be given food, medical attention and shelter. If their legal status cannot be resolved, they will be returned to their home countries.

Mexico is under intense pressure from President Donald Trump to contain migrants before they reach the border.

Credit: Salvador Herrera / Flickr

Trump has threatened to punish Mexico and Central American countries economically if they fail to rein in migrant flows. Tariffs and other economic penalties could be used according to Trump.

The current caravan is the largest surge of people to cross into Mexico since its president reached agreements with Trump and some central American governments to reduce pressure on the US border. It’s also the first group to test the new ‘Safe Third Country’ agreements that the US has signed with several Central American countries. So far, it’s not sure how those agreements will affect asylum claims by migrants.

Mexico says all detentions and deportations are being done according to law and with full respect for human rights, but many organizations disagree.

Credit: Alfredo Estrella / Getty

Migrant advocates dispute the government’s claims and say they’re worried about Mexico’s new hardline policies. However, the toughness of these new immigration policies aren’t always reflected in the language used by government officials, many of whom use sugarcoated language to describe the policies.

In his daily morning press conferences, the president describes the mass deportations of Central Americans as “assisted returns.” 

While last week, just one day after troops had arrested more than 800 migrants who crossed a river into Mexico, the country’s Foreign Minster interrupted a reporter who asked how many migrants had been detained, saying “They are not detained,” Ebrard insisted. “They are in migration stations.” That’s the euphemism the government uses to refer to migrant detention centers.

According to Ebrard and the National Migration Institute, migrants are not arrested or detained — they are “rescued.” Deportations are “assisted returns,” which most of the time — officials say — are voluntary.

Meanwhile, the mass detentions come amid news that nonprofit groups and advocate organizations are being denied access to detained migrants.

Credit: Gobierno de Mexico

Mexico’s immigration agency announced Tuesday that it has temporarily suspended visits by civic, activist and religious groups to migrant detention centers.

Such visits have long served as a safeguard to check on the treatment of migrants, some of whom have complained in the past of crowding, prolonged detention and unsatisfactory conditions. The National Immigration Institute did not give a reason for suspending visits, saying only that “rescheduling the visits will depend on the work load of each migrant center, with the goal of providing services to the migrants to continue without interruption.”

Even Mexico’s President, came out against the announcement made by his own government saying that it’s not the right move and that he would look into the reason for the policy change.

There Is Chaos At The Mexico-Guatemala Border As The Next Migrant Caravan Tries To Enter Mexico And AMLO Pushes Back

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There Is Chaos At The Mexico-Guatemala Border As The Next Migrant Caravan Tries To Enter Mexico And AMLO Pushes Back

Jose Torres / Getty

Last week news broke that another migrant caravan was forming in Honduras, in an attempt to safely cross Guatemala and Mexico on the way to the United States. Immediately, the reports were met with a mix of panic and indignity among Central American leaders who vowed to stop the caravan before reaching the US-Mexican border.

And it looks like that plan has been put into motion. Although Guatemala allowed many migrants through its territory, upon reaching the border with Mexico, many migrants were turned away, or worse.

A caravan of nearly 3,000 people has been met with force as they’ve tried to cross into Mexico from Guatemala.

Credit: Jose Torres / Getty

According to Guatemala, at least 4,000 people entered from Honduras since Wednesday, making for one of the biggest surges since three Central American governments signed agreements with the Trump administration giving them more of the responsibility for dealing with migrants. Even though these exact same countries are ill-equipped to handle the influx of migrants – let alone fight back against their country’s own poverty, violence, and corruption that force many migrants to flee in the first place.

Mexican government officials ordered them to block entry into the country. 

Mexico’s National Immigration Institute issued a statement saying it would detain any migrants without legal status, and deport them if they couldn’t legalize their status. 

Video footage showed scattered groups of migrants throwing rocks at a few members of the National Guard militarized police who were on the banks of the river attempting to thwart illegal crossings, while hundreds of others ran past into Mexico.

Hopes were raised on Friday after Mexican President AMLO announced that there were 4,000 jobs along the southern border available to migrants.

The day after AMLO’s statement regarding possible job opportunities, more than 1,000 migrants attempted to cross into Mexico. According to the country’s National Institute of Migration (INM), each migrant was interviewed and told about opportunities with two government development programs. which will be implemented along the southern border and in both El Salvador and Honduras.

Meanwhile, as migrants waited to be processed for entry into Mexico, a loudspeakers warned migrants against applying for asylum in the US. However, many migrants are doubtful when it comes to Mexico’s offer of work.

“I don’t believe that. It is a lie,” one migrant told Al Jazeera. “They are just trying to find a means trap us and to debilitate the caravan.”

The violence at the Mexico-Guatemala border has left children separated from their families as crowds were sent fleeing from pepper spray.

Credit: Jeff Abbott / Flickr

As Mexican security forces launched tear gas and pepper spray into a crowd of migrants attempting to enter the country – hundreds were forced to flee. The ensuing chaos left children lost without their parents and mothers and fathers desperately searching for their children.

A Reuters witness spoke to at least two mothers said their children went missing amid the chaos, as the migrants on Mexican soil scattered in an attempt to avoid being detained by Mexican officials.

“We didn’t come to stay here. We just want to cross to the other side,” said Ingrid, 18, a Honduran migrant. “I don’t want to go back to my country because there is nothing there, just hunger.”

Many have harsh words for Mexico’s President AMLO – calling him a puppet and a coward.

Although most agree that every country has the right to enforce its own immigration laws, many are upset with AMLO for the way his administration has cracked down on Central American migrants. Many see the crackdown as little more than bowing to pressure from Trump – turning him into a puppet of the US.

So what should AMLO do when dealing with unauthorized migrants and pressure from a US President?

First, violence and attacks on migrants simply crossing territory should never be on the table. Second, AMLO’s administration should let the caravan reach the US-border and let the asylum process play out as it was meant to do under international law. Just because Trump wants AMLO to join him in breaking international norms, doesn’t mean he should.

But many doubt that will ever happen. Neither of these presidents, Trump nor AMLO, will change course to support legal asylum claims.

So what’s next? Will Mexico relent and agree to pay for Trump’s border wall? Don’t dismiss the idea, not when the Mexican president has so far carried out Trump’s every whim.