Bit early in the ATX, but the Big Red Car has to tell you about the reckless behavior of our Travis County Sheriff, Sally Hernandez as it relates to ICE and not honoring detainers. Travis County is the home county of the city of Austin By God Texas. Austin is sometimes referred to as The People’s Republic of Austin.
On 1 February 2017, Sheriff Hernandez announced her new policy of not cooperating with ICE (US Immigration and Customs Enforcement) as it relates to honoring certain (almost all) detainer requests.
This is on the forward edge of the battle area between the Federal government’s objective of deporting criminal aliens, thereby Making American Safe Again (couldn’t resist, sorry), and the sanctuary city movement.
Already, the State of Texas (in the person of Governor Greg Abbott) has taken action against Travis County and canceled state grants for veterans (amongst other worthy endeavors) to the tune of $1,500,000. Seems a small amount, but it is meaningful if you are one of those veterans impacted. [Full Disclosure: The Boss is a veteran and this really pisses him off.]
Bottom line: Our Sheriff is releasing criminals into Travis County. These criminals (charged with and/0r convicted of serious crimes) would, otherwise, be deported to their country of origin. Sheriff Hernandez’s actions, in failing to cooperate with ICE, are recklessly endangering the safety of Travis County citizens and Texans, in general.
Prior to the election of Sheriff Hernandez, her predecessor, Sheriff Greg Hamilton, cooperated with ICE in the detention of criminals. Let’s be clear. Once upon a time, Travis County was part of the United States and Texas.
ICE would issue a detainer request and the Travis County Sheriff’s Office would detain these criminals. ICE would take control of these criminals and deport them.
In this manner, the citizens of Travis County were protected from criminals. This, after all, is the fundamental mission of law enforcement and the Travis County Sheriff is a law enforcement officer.
A detainer request is an administrative request from ICE to a local law enforcement organization to “detain” a criminal (charged or convicted) until ICE can show up to take possession of the criminal. This may preclude the criminal being allowed out on bond, which is a good thing.
ICE enjoys cooperation from almost all law enforcement entities except for those, like Travis County, who have boldly entitled themselves as “sanctuary” entities and who are openly failing to cooperate with the Federal government in its mission of enforcing our borders, ensuring the public safety, and deporting illegal criminals.
Sheriff Hernandez announced her “new” policy effective 1 February 2017. She will use the power of her office to detain only murderers, aggravated assailants, and human traffickers. It is not clear as to how she conjured up that list. She, apparently, does not answer to anyone and has no basis in law — she is a law enforcement officer — to issue such a policy.
She will NOT detain:
Rapists (should fall under the classification of “aggravated assaults”),
Sexual assailants who take carnal knowledge of minors,
Sexual deviants who expose themselves to minors,
Sexual predators against children (fondlers),
Burglars (forced or unforced entry),
Aggravated assailants — with or without weapons (which seems to be against her own stated policy),
Drug possessors of all kinds (marijuana, cocaine, heroin),
Hit & runners,
Felons fleeing to avoid prosecution,
Criminals resisting arrest,
Domestic violence perpetrators, and,
This should catch one’s attention. Are you OK with, say, kidnappers and rapists being released back into Travis County? Big Red Car is not.
Remember, even before this list is made, all of the perps involved are in the country illegally. They are criminals who have a second offense. In many instances, they are not just charged with a crime, they have been convicted and have served their sentence. CRIMINALS.
Sheriff Hernandez justified her unique policy saying she believes her policy is “in line with the values of my constituents.”
In a particularly bizarre utterance, Sheriff Hernandez indicated she would comply with a law if it were passed by the Texas Legislature and the law compelled her to cooperate. Sheriff Hernandez, apparently, wants the Legislature to tell her personally to comply with Federal requests to rid our county of criminals — that strike anyone else as a bit odd?
Why, Big Red Car?
The “why” of it is very simple. Sheriff Hernandez believes her views on immigration are superior to those of the Federal government, the State of Texas and are more important than the safety of the citizens of Travis County.
She thinks she is above the law. She does not care about the financial impact on veterans her actions have caused. She just doesn’t care about anything other than protecting criminals from deportation. She believes she can do this because she has the support of the County Commissioners Court, her bosses.
Let’s be clear. The sanctuary city movement is unlawful. It is a political initiative to re-write the immigration laws of the United States. It is the manifestation of the political ego of its leaders. Did I mention that Sheriff Hernandez is a Democrat?
Sheriff Sally Hernandez is not alone in her flaunting of the law and her failure to cooperate with the Federal government in the elimination of illegal criminals from amongst our communities.
She is supported by the likes of men such as David Escamilla, our County Attorney, who will treat you to a smokescreen of baloney about arrest warrants and court orders and due process and the flaws with everything related to detainers. [Remember to bring eye drops, cause the smoke will definitely get in your eyes.]
His views were not dispositive of the conduct of the prior Sheriff. It is a new found passion for the County Attorney.
One of the primary duties of the County Attorney is to advise the County Commissioners Court as to their official duties.
ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement)
ICE was created in 2003 by the merger of parts of the US Customs Service and the US Immigration and Naturalization Service. They employ more than 20,000 workers and have 400 offices throughout the US and 46 foreign countries.
They have the primary responsibility to control the US borders, to operate the customs system, to oversee physical trade at the border, and to oversee immigration to ensure homeland security and public safety.
Right now, the Trump administration has issued guidance to rid the US of criminals who also are illegally in the country. Travis County is flaunting that directive and failing to adhere to the law while making the important mission of ICE infinitely more difficult.
You have to wonder whose side the Travis County Sheriff’s Office is on in the confrontation between good and evil.
The easiest consequence to understand is that Sheriff Hernandez is flooding our community with criminals. Simple to understand, no?
Sheriff Hernandez has her own immigration policy and it will recklessly endanger YOU. Get rid of bad guys? Nah, that’s not going to happen because Sheriff Hernandez doesn’t think that’s a good idea.
The State of Texas legislature is considering Senate Bill 4 (already passed by the Senate and awaiting action in the House) which would create penalties up to removing people, such as Sheriff Hernandez, from office. It will also impact state financial support.
The Trump administration intends to take similar action at the Federal level and to starve sanctuary entities of Federal assistance.
Veterans, and other beneficiaries of lost state funding will be unfavorably impacted. Obviously, nobody gives a damn about our veterans except on Veterans Day.
Call to action
So, dear reader, what can you do?
Write a letter to Sheriff Sally Hernandez and County Attorney and the County Commissioners Court to express your views.
Sheriff Sally Hernandez
Criminal Justice Center
509 West 11th Street, 1st Floor
County Attorney David Escamilla
PO Box 1748
Austin, Texas 78767
County Judge Sarah Eckhardt, Precinct One Jeff Travillion, Precinct Two Brigid Shea, Precinct Three Gerald Daugherty, Precinct Four Margaret Gomez
PO Box 1748
Austin, Texas 78767
In the meantime, keep your guard up in Travis County because your Sheriff is recklessly endangering your life by her policy.