A Town Near You? ICE Reveals Locations of Convicted Murderers It Freed
By Jessica Vaughan, August 22, 2014
The 169 aliens with homicide-related convictions who were freed by ICE in 2013 were booked out of detention facilities in 24 different states, with the largest number in California, according to information provided to Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa). ICE records show that these convicted killers were associated with 96 different cities and towns across America. The city with the largest concentration was Miami, with seven convicted murderers freed by ICE, followed by Los Angeles with six.
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ICE provided the information to Sen. Grassley in response to concerns based on a CIS report revealing that ICE freed 36,007 aliens with criminal convictions in 2013, an occurrence that Rep. Lamar Smith (R-Texas) called “the worst prison break in history.” Sen. Grassley asked ICE for more details, particularly on the 169 criminal aliens with homicide convictions, including the reason for release, the location of release, and the zip code of the alien’s last known address.
First, it must be noted that the original ICE document enumerating the 36,007 releases indicates that the count of criminal aliens with homicide convictions is 193, not 169. It is not clear why ICE did not provide information to Sen. Grassley on all 193 homicide-conviction releases.
ICE states that 154 of the 169 aliens with homicide-related convictions were freed because of a court order, leaving nine releases that were at ICE’s discretion. This contradicts an earlier ICE statement saying that about one-fourth of the releases (or about 48) were discretionary.
Some of the court-ordered releases are the so-called Zadvydas cases, where ICE must release or anticipates being ordered to release an alien because the alien’s country refuses to cooperate in the deportation process. Others are likely the result of a Ninth Circuit ruling allowing for bond hearings for aliens whose detention lasts for six months.
ICE says that the discretionary releases were due to “eligibility for bond” or “deteriorated health or advanced age”, without providing details or numbers.
ICE does not specify how many, if any, of the homicide convicts have been removed from the country. It states that only 131 have been issued a final order of removal, and that one of the freed convicts was granted voluntary departure. That individual is the only one that ICE says has left the country. This gives the impression that the rest of the homicide convicts who were freed are still at large somewhere in the United States.
ICE’s response follows on an internal audit report on ICE’s botched case management that resulted in the release of 2,226 detainees in February 2013. Most of those releases occurred in Texas and Arizona.
The following is a listing of the cities and towns associated with the freed aliens with homicide-related convictions in 2013, which are shown in red on the map. ICE also provided a list of the detention centers from which the aliens were released, which are shown in blue on the map.
Cities and Towns Associated with Convicted Murderers Freed by ICE in 2013
(Note: This list is derived from the list of zip codes provided by ICE that were associated with the criminal alien’s last known address. This information was not available for every released alien. In addition, there could be more than one convict associated with a zip code.)