Houston has become the target of Texas Governor Greg Abbott who wants to eliminate any sanctuary county from his state. Sally Hernandez, Sheriff of Travis County, is one of the main national supporters of sanctuary policies. She has been one most vocal in her opposition to the Trump Administration’s immigration policy.
In the first week of monitoring conducted by the Department of Homeland security, Travis County has released 142 criminal aliens that were slated for deportation. This compares to a national total figure of 206. Therefore Houston is currently the most active sanctuary jurisdiction in the nation.
In all cases, ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) had issued a detainer request. The released aliens faced charges including sexual assault, robbery, and domestic violence.
The Texas Plan to Outlaw Sanctuary Cities
The Governor accuses “Sanctuary Sally” of purposefully violating the law and releasing back into the society illegal immigrants that have been charged or accused of serious crimes like sexual assault of a minor.
“This is a dangerous practice which Texas is going to hammer down. We will not tolerate this. So we have taken action. We are going to take even stiffer action to prohibit and ban sanctuary cities in Texas.”
The Sheriff campaigned on and got elected on the promise that she would not enforce ICE detainers. The Governor has already defunded Travis county from of $ 1.5 million of grants that were going to them from the state of Texas. They are now working on a piece of legislation that will impose criminal penalties where the Sheriff herself can wind up in prison and be removed from office. They would also assign steep fines as well as other penalties.
“We are going to make it so costly, so expensive that there is now way that any city or county can take on sanctuary city policies.”
The new law could also hold the Sheriff, the public official personally or the city or county liable for personal damages produced on American citizens by the immigrants released.