Of interest from other sources:

Below are some FAQ’s from the Immigration Resource Center on the legality of local law enforcement involvement in enforcement of immigration laws. [Slightly outdated in terms of the detainer holds – guidance and form was recently updated – however, there is no substantial material change to the analysis as a result of the new detainer hold policy guidelines.

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  1. This sounds like a great way to avoid a traffic ticket in Key West. When you are pulled over, just tell the officer that you’re name is Jose Gonzalez, and you forgot your address. You don’t have a drivers license or any other identification, and you’re illegal. That’s your Key West get out of jail free card. How can the KWPD officer give you a ticket and expect to ever see you again for the fine or court date if they don’t know who you are or where you live? From the Blue Paper’s perspective, there’s nothing the officer is allowed to do. The KWPD officer can’t call ICE to determine your true identity, and it is apparently not KWPD policy to hold you for a traffic violation. Just toss whatever ticket you may receive and go along your merry “illegal” way.

    In Key West, it doesn’t matter if you are a mass murderer, an international terrorist or just a common Joe, just use the magic words “I’m illegal” and you’re suddenly untouchable.

    1. The City of Key West has decided that KWPD officers have no business ascertaining the immigration status of those they come in contact with. That is City policy. The Chief is following that policy. Monroe County Sheriff has stated he has “no policy” and he allows his officers “discretion”. In Florida officers have the discretion to arrest those who are driving a motor vehicle and who do not possess a valid drivers license as that is a misdemeanor that occurred in the presence of the officer. They can also use their discretion to instead issue a “Notice to Appear”. In the case where the person has no ID the officer could chose to arrest him and bring him to the County jail. In this case the man had identification showing his address, his boss came to the scene and vouched for his identity and the officer did indeed choose to issue a “Notice to Appear” in lieu of arresting him. Why exactly do you believe immigration status should matter for purpose of enforcing state traffic laws? Now, if you want to argue that you believe or wish it was legal for local law enforcement to enforce immigration law absent specific federal authorization — that would be more on point.

    2. Ben, you’re right. That’s brilliant. If after a traffic law violator refuses to provide a divers license or ID, and the police can’t find him in their system, The Blue Paper is suggesting it should be illegal for the officer to ask if he’s illegal? He should just let him go with a ticket to whatever name and address he gives.

      Worse, this is just the beginning of how upside down we would have to turn our society if we were to not enforce immigration law. America would be a welfare state magnet for the uneducated, the unskilled, and the lawless. This has already affected wages; how much more would it do so if institutionalized? How long would it be until it’s racist or illegal to require full background checks on some employees because that disadvantages Central and South Americans? How would this change our culture and political values if people coming from failed cultures and failed states become an even larger portion of our population, further fail to assimilate do to our welfare system? How long would it be before even people like you and I are so concerned that we have institutionalized two classes of long time residents in the US, that we want to just go ahead and grant them full citizenship?

      Even if we just loosen immigration law rather than discard it, as the Blue Paper has suggested before, excluding those from deportation who have contributed to society for some time, it would represent a further abandonment of our principle of blind justice. It would further open up application of laws to the whims of those currently in power, enabling them to selectively exclude the application of laws to whatever class of lawbreakers most benefit the political or economic special interests of their donors or base, and selectively apply it to others.

      This has consequences beyond just letting some guy stay here who has done nothing much wrong other breaking in or staying beyond what he promised. Multiplied by tens of millions, it degrades our civil society and our liberties.


      1. The Blue Paper “suggests”, based on the law, that an officer, pursuant to Florida Law, always has the discretion to arrest and jail anyone who is driving but does not have a driver’s license. In this particular case the officer decided to issue a “Notice to Appear”. The Blue Paper interviewed an attorney who specialized in immigration law. The Blue Paper pointed out, through this expert in the field of law, that there is a federal program that governs how local law enforcement can be empowered to enforce immigration law. The Blue Paper pointed out that our Sheriff has not signed an agreement with ICE to train and empower any of his deputies to enforce federal immigration law. The Blue Paper also points out that the Sheriff has taken the position that his deputies may question the immigration status of subjects they come in contact with at their discretion and that he need not take a formal position on the matter, train, track, or oversee those deputies in the manner in which they interact with suspects and Border Patrol with regard to enforcement of federal immigration law. The Blue Paper pointed out that the City of Key West and KWPD do adhere to the well-established legal doctrine that KWPD officers are only empowered to enforce state and city ordinances absent some form of federal authorization to enforce federal law. Now as to your points, the Blue Paper has never suggested that immigration law be “discarded”. That is simply not true. As to the rest of your comments, yes, there is a larger discussion about immigration reform [taking place nationwide] and how that might include an amnesty program for certain undocumented aliens that meet certain criteria, but that is not the subject of this article. The purpose of this article is to inform readers as to what is happening on the ground in Key West in terms of MCSO enforcement of federal immigration law, as well as on the existing current law governing how the federal government can authorize local law enforcement personnel to investigate violations of and enforce immigration law.

        1. Nothing in Section 287(g) prohibits local police from asking someone’s immigration status. It just sets up a formal program to work with them on immigration enforcement.

          And as best I can tell, although the federal government “may” and “has” prohibited some state immigration enforcement activities due to conflicting priorities with theirs, there is no specific law prohibiting them from assisting. This is supported in Congressional Research Report #R41423. https://fas.org/sgp/crs/homesec/R41423.pdf

          “Congressional authority to prescribe rules on immigration does not necessarily imply exclusive authority to enforce those rules. In certain circumstances, Congress has expressly authorized states and localities to assist in enforcing federal immigration law.

          “Moreover, there is a notion that has been articulated in some federal courts and by the executive branch that states may possess “inherent” authority to assist in the enforcement of federal immigration law, even in the absence of clear authorization by federal statute. Nonetheless, states may be precluded from taking actions if federal law would thereby be thwarted.”

          I see another news a news story also states that “federal law does not prohibit local police from asking people their immigration status”, but if you have evidence to the contrary, I’ll listen. http://www.fox9.com/news/256078000-story

          Finally, Wayne Dapser may be an immigration lawyer, but he also appears to be an ACLU activists working to make Key West a sanctuary city. But more disturbing is his summary of the KW chief of police’s statement that he doesn’t want his police to enforce immigration law because “it destroys your ability to investigate real crimes.” I’m pretty sure the police chief didn’t use the term “real” crimes, but if Wayne Daper believes immigration crimes are not, he’s not qualified to be an “expert”.

          1. I know Wayne Dapser somewhat.

            We first met via man Wayne had tried to help prove who is actually was, as the man had one view and law enforcement had another view. Wayne said the man was referred to him because he did immigration work and that entailed doing a lot of work helping people get identification. The client was not an illegal immigrant as far as I knew.

            Wayne also is involved in local theater productions, he acts, as I recall. And, he had me on his local morning radio show once.

            His law office was really messy the several times I was in it. But I liked him. I suppose he is not upset that he is getting this free advertising for his immigration law practice.

            I would like to hear from Wayne directly, if he wishes to weigh into this discussion.

            I know very little about immigration law. However, I cannot imagine it is illegal, as it seems the blue paper is claiming, for sheriff deputies and city police officers, to inquire about the immigration legality of someone they arrest for something else, which is a crime of some kind, including a traffic violation. Especially, if the crime is driving without a driver’s licence. More especially, if the driver does not even have a driver’s license. That is a pretty darn serious offense if you taken into consideration public safety.

            Because of the heat of passion I am seeing from the blue paper editor in these comments, that’s Naja Girard, I cannot help but wonder if Naja has some kind of personal stake in this conversation; if this really close to the bone for her in some way?

            I am pretty sure hubby Araud is an American citizen, so there is no worry there. But twice now in this conversation I have asked Naja how Arnaud became an American citizen?, and twice Naja did not respond. I think that’s a fair inquiry by me, especially given Naja’s heat of passion over whether or not local law enforcement inquiring about immigration status.

            There is something else in play, which I don’t recall seeing in any other reader comments.
            Since 9/11, America has been at war with Islam. Or, if you wish, Islam has been at war with America.

            9/11 changed everything for America and Americans and American law enforcement. That’s a fact.

            I can’t stand Donald Trump (nor can I stand Hillary Clinton)However, I think Trump struck a very deep and very real cord in a great many Americans when he campaigned against illegal immigrants being allowed to stay in America. When he did that, he tapped into the much deeper terror many Americans have of being killed, or their loved ones killed, like just happened in London, England.

            White Americans, especially, have that terror.

            I wonder how the blue paper would have reported the two recent illegal immigrant cases, if one of Naja and Arnaud’s children had been blown up by a suicide bomber in an American city on the mainland, or even in Key West?

            I read what all was written in this discussion about the Arizona statute. I have legal training. I practiced law. I do not see that case has much, if any, application to the two local illegal immigration cases.

            However, how I think those two cases should have been handled is, the 2 illegal immigrants should have been vetted. ICE should have talked with friends, relatives, employers of the 2 illegal aliens, to determine what kind of people they are.

            If all that was discovered was they don’t have legal papers to be in America, and otherwise they appear to be good people, they should have been released on their own recognizance and told to call Wayne Dapser, who could try to help them become legal residents.

            There are really serious crimes being committed all over America, and even in Key West. And, I think, in the White House. These two immigration cases are distracting, in my opinion, from what ICE and local law enforcement need to be doing to help Americans be safe.

          2. Sloan, I believe you did hear from Wayne directly. [That was a video interview we provided.] But, of course, Wayne Dapser [and many other immigration and civil rights attorneys] could say a lot more on the subject – if that is what you mean. Now, regarding your insinuations about our “mysterious” motivation and passion regarding the immigration stories we are publishing: Would you also say to us — regarding our Charles Eimers coverage: ‘I wonder how the blue paper would have reported the police-involved death of Charles Eimers, if one of Naja and Arnaud’s children had been killed by a man from Michigan?” Yes, Sloan, Arnaud is indeed a US Citizen and there are exactly zero members of our family who are illegally present in the US. Please Sloan – let’s stick to the issues. Undocumented immigrants and what to do about them is a huge issue in the US. This one story here is an attempt to open a discussion on the powers that local law enforcement officers have [or don’t have] to investigate and detain foreign nationals, during a routine traffic stop, for INS infractions and how the Sheriff is [not] overseeing or guiding his deputies on this subject matter – or at least not willing to share with the public what his policy is as he calls it “no policy” whereas the City of Key West and KWPD have stated their policy very clearly — not to do what the Sheriff’s deputy is doing. You say you read the US Supreme Court case about the unconstitutionality of law enforcement officers taking the time to investigate, without probable cause, a secondary issue while conducting a traffic stop — and further detaining the person [for any amount of time at all], or spending any time at all on investigations outside the scope of the traffic stop mission. You say you believe that case has no bearing on the immigration investigations and detentions that occurred here locally with a local Sheriff’s deputy and FHP. You did not explain WHY you believe the case is not on point, but instead vaguely pointed to your legal training. [You did not practice criminal defense law or civil rights law if I remember correctly, but rather real estate or tax law?] So, Sloan, do you believe we should set aside the constitutional rights of all foreign-born people who come in contact with local police because some Americans – as you say – profess to be “terrified” that they or their loved ones will be killed by a terrorist? So if I’m following you correctly – we are in some sort of state of emergency here when it comes to terrorism and aliens must be treated differently. I haven’t heard that the President or Congress has officially declared that the country is setting aside the constitutional rights of all aliens due to concerns over terrorism. Question: Should law enforcement proceed with the same zeal to stop ALL perpetrators of infractions of law of any kind [remember most immigration law is civil in nature] when it comes to U.S. born citizens as well? Do you Sloan, believe local law enforcement has the authority to [during a traffic stop, when the subject is an American citizen – born here like you and me] interrogate the person they have stopped about whether they have committed any other infractions where there is no probable cause to believe that those other infractions were or are being committed? Should the officer call IRS on the spot while the suspect patiently waits, for example, when, after interrogation by the uniformed officer, the person admits that he works “under the table” for cash on the weekends or pays a high-schooler to babysit 25 hours a week but doesn’t pay any employer taxes? Should the officer be authorized too to detain that person until an IRS agent can come to the scene and question him? If not — then why is it ok, when it is a non-citizen, for local law enforcement to delve into question about immigration status during a routine traffic stop? Remember – that driving without a drivers license is an arrestable offense [so there is no need to worry about the guy “getting away” due to lack of “proven identity”].

  2. All this time the El Siboney chef drove a car without a license?

    Perhaps he should have gotten around on a bicycle or city transit bus or a motor scooter that does not require a driver’s license?

    What was the deputy to do when he asked for the driver’s license and was given something else?

    From the Sheriff’s website, the oath the deputy took when he was sworn in:

    B.Oaths of Office
    Prior to assuming sworn status and beginning employment, all personnel will be required to take and abide the following oaths:
    1. Sworn Positions
    “I, ______________, a citizen of the State of Florida, and of the United States of America, and being appointed by Richard A. Ramsay, Sheriff of Monroe County, and a recipient of public funds as such appointment, do hereby solemnly swear or affirm that I will support, protect, and defend the Constitution of the Government of the United States and of the State of Florida; that I am duly qualified to hold office under the Constitution of the State of Florida and that I will well and faithfully perform the office of Deputy Sheriff on which I am about to enter, so help me God.”

    That oath does not appear to specifically require a deputy to support, protect, and defend any legislative laws of the United States nor of the Florida Governments.

    Here is the oath the Florida Governor and other state officials take:

    (Art. II. § 5(b), Fla. Const.)
    County of ___________________________

    I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support, protect, and defend the Constitution and Government of the United States and of the State of Florida; that I am duly qualified to hold office under the Constitution of the State, and that I will well and faithfully perform the duties of
    (Title of Office)

    That oath requires the Governor and other elected officials to defend the US and Florida Constitutions and the US and Florida Governments, which I imagine includes laws passed by those Governments.

    I could not find on the Key West Police Department website the oath city police officers take when they are sworn in.

    I could not find on the City of Key West website the oath the city’s elected and hired officials take when they are sworn in.

    I called the city clerk’s office and was told they would email me those two oaths later this morning. When received, I will post them below this comment.

    Meanwhile, Arnaud Girard was born in France and when he was a grown man came to America on a sailboat, a fascinating heroic story I have told him I hope he turns into a book, including his finally ending up in Key West where he met French-speaking Naja.

    Arnaud is an American citizen. How did that come about?

  3. Key West elected officials oath of office:

    I, (candidate name) do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I am a citizen of the
    United States, and the State of Florida, and the City of Key West, and have all the qualifications as required by the charter for the office upon which I am about to enter and that I will support the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of the State of Florida, and the ordinances of the City of Key West, and that I will faithfully perform the duties of the office upon which I am now about to enter. So help me God.

  4. KWPD oath:

    I, _________________, do solemnly swear (or affirm), that I will support, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States, the State of Florida, and the Charter of the City of Key West ,,,

    1. What is your point? Do you believe the word “Constitution” equates to U.S. Code? The US Supreme Court has made it clear that without federal authorization either through specific U.S. Code or via a federal authorization program such as the 287(g) program, local law enforcement is barred from enforcing federal immigration law [or a state statute – like in Arizona – that can pass the test of not being preempted]. The entire field of immigration has been declared federally pre-empted by the US Supreme Court. Are you disagreeing with the immigration attorney that was interviewed for our piece? If so, on what basis?

      1. My point, Naja, was to show different oaths of office taken by local law enforcement, city officials and state officials.

        KWPD oath:

        I, _________________, do solemnly swear (or affirm), that I will support, protect and defend the Constitution and the Government of the United States, the State of Florida, and the Charter of the City of Key West ,,,

        To support, protect and defend the US Constitution and Government would, I think, includes the laws of the US Government. Not just take up arms to defend the US Government from foreign or local physical attack.

        Whereas I got this off the Sheriff’s website:

        I, ______________, a citizen of the State of Florida, and of the United States of America, and being appointed by Richard A. Ramsay, Sheriff of Monroe County, and a recipient of public funds as such appointment, do hereby solemnly swear or affirm that I will support, protect, and defend the Constitution of the Government of the United States and of the State of Florida …

        That oath is just to support, protect and defend the Constitutions of the US and Florida.

        Since this is about immigration, legal and illegal, how did your French hubby Arnaud become an American citizen?

        If he had not become an American citizen, would your position be he can stay in America because he’s been here a long time?

        If he were arrested for a motor vehicle driving violation and he was not an American citizen, you would protest his being treated as an illegal alien?

        Frankly, I think it’s a dirty rotten shame immigrants who come to America and work hard and contribute are deported because they are illegal immigrants. But they know the rules when they come here.

        The El Siboney chef had quite a long time to become an American citizen. Or, I suppose, to get a visa that could keep him here. But he did not do either?

        But then, there are Hispanic US Citizens in Key West, born here, or immigrated here, who have either no or very little English.

        I suppose if we really want to deal with illegal immigration, we should put that into the hands of the real Americans, whose ancestors would have been smart to kill every white person who came off a sailing ship onto land in the Caribbean, North America, Mexico, Central America and South America :-).

        1. Sloan,

          The piece we did this week is about the legality of local law enforcement investigating/arresting[detaining] people for immigration violations during a simple traffic stop. Hence the interview with Key West’s immigration lawyer, Wayne Dapser.

          The subject is complex. If one is interested in the law – which after all is what governs what law enforcement is authorized to do and specifies the limits of their powers in each circumstance – one must look to the law and associated jurisprudence – not to vague oaths of service.

          Many people are shouting out what they believe the law SHOULD be without really trying to research it at all — but that doesn’t change what it actually is. That is what Judge’s are for. It’s a shame that people are not more interested in the subject matter and that immigration enforcement discussions are so often turned into a left vs. right, Obama vs. Trump battleground. Our Sheriff claims there nothing to see here. He’s like Trump and we are “fake news”. A shame that those in charge are not being transparent about this issue which is so important – for aliens, for local economy, for civil rights…

          Most immigration law is civil [not criminal]. It appears clear that local law enforcement has NO authority to investigate/enforce federal CIVIL statues.

          According to the jurisprudence I’ve looked at after consultation with attorneys, local law enforcement officers are not authorized by Florida state, federal or “constitutional” law to go outside the mission of a traffic stop to investigate and detain someone on suspicion of a CIVIL infraction of federal immigration law. [It can’t just be a little bonus add-on to a traffic stop.] In the case of the El Siboney chef – Border Patrol informed us that he was a “visa overstay” case – a civil infraction.

          Now, can a local law enforcement officer call Border Patrol or ICE anytime he/she comes across someone from a foreign country who has no valid Florida D/L and say this guy/gal is not American and has no Florida D/L, you might want to check him out? I guess so — anyone can make such a phone call. What Border Patrol will do about it is their affair.

          But this officer has gone way beyond that. When he spends time on INS investigations and actually detains persons [he has stopped due to probable cause for a traffic violation] longer than it takes to fulfill the mission of his traffic stop and for a purpose unrelated to the mission of the traffic stop, he is actually conducting [according to a SCOTUS opinion] a SECOND stop that must be justified [by probable cause] on its own – independently.

          First, he must be empowered to enforce the INS law he seeks to enforce. Second, he must have the probable cause needed for a stop focused on that immigration law enforcement. And third, if I’ve understood correctly, he must be going after a CRIMINAL infraction of the INS code — not a CIVIL infraction of the INS code.

          Should our Sheriff have a policy on something so complicated? Many people think he should…

          There are many legal issues at play and lots of jurisprudence to read. Pointing out a bunch of oaths that show that law enforcement must uphold the US Constitution and therefore must enforce federal immigration law is not only irrelevant – it is simple-minded and – by the looks of the case law – incorrect.

          Our story is not about what should be done by the federal government once they have arrested an alleged undocumented alien. Of course federal agents enforce the law they are empowered to enforce.

          [Although many people believe we need sweeping reform and that a pathway to citizenship should be provided to certain non-criminal undocumented aliens that have been here for a certain amount of time and have sufficient ties to the community — such as children born here, spouses that are Citizens, etc etc. this is what Republicans like Ronald Reagan and Bush Sr. fought for just a few decades ago. And they did indeed legalize approximately 4 million undocumented aliens back in the mid 1980’s]

          In any case, your questions about my position on some hypothetical arrest of my hypothetically illegal alien husband is also irrelevant to this week’s story – as is our personal family history.

          The issue we have put before you is: When may local law enforcement, in the state of Florida, LAWFULLY investigate and detain someone for suspicion of a CIVIL INS infraction? And ditto for criminal INS infractions. [In terms of criminal immigration law, there are plenty of nuances: it is a matter of state law empowering the officer to act in that domain as well as federal law — regarding to what extent local law enforcement can be involved.]

          There is one Arizona statute that was able to withstand judicial scrutiny that empowers officers [in Arizona – not Florida] to have some VERY MINIMAL involvement in federal CRIMINAL INS law enforcement. There are no such statutes in Florida to my knowledge.

          There is a federal statute that specifically empowers local law enforcement to arrest/detain an alien who they have probable cause to believe is “illegally present” — however there is an additional requirement that 1) the subject has a prior FELONY CONVICTION and either was deported or left voluntarily after that conviction and 2) that the local law enforcement officer has confirmation from ICE that the alien actually is “illegally present”. That is a specific delegation of power authorized by Congress [8 U.S. Code § 1252c] – as is the 287[g] program [Sheriff is not involved in the 287(g) program where deputies would be specially trained and deputized, tracked and supervised] and the “Safe Communities” program [sharing fingerprint information with FBI who subsequently shares with ICE and the highly controversial voluntary detainer hold program that has been declared unconstitutional at least 9 times] that our Sheriff is involved with.

          In the case of routine traffic stops: [Both of the incidents we have uncovered show officers involved in routine traffic cases] very recent SCOTUS opinion makes it clear that any investigation/detention regarding matters outside the mission of the traffic stop is considered a separate stop [detention] and must be accompanied by probable cause for that second stop/investigation/detention. Racial profiling is strictly forbidden.

          So in these local cases, one must ask where is the authorization to act in this realm absent a Florida law or Federal law specifically allowing it and even if he was empowered by Florida or Federal law to act where is the probable cause that the LEO had that these men had committed a CRIMINAL violation of INS law that would allow him to take the time to investigate and hold them for the purpose of enforcement of the federal criminal immigration code? Remember — its as though he is stopping him cold. It is a separate enforcement action. It could be argued that just taking the time to ask the question, “Are you illegal?” was prohibited during the traffic stop, as it had nothing to do with the mission of the traffic stop. [This is what Dapser stated.]

          If ascertaining legal alien status was the mission of the secondary stops – where was the probable cause for that immigration enforcement stop? Looking Hispanic and speaking with an accent amounts to impermissible profiling so it can’t be that. Not having a Florida driver’s license? Lots of Citizens are guilty of that same infraction — so that is not probable cause to believe someone committed a federal immigration CRIME — is it?

          Even admitting to being “illegal” [like the chef did after being questioned on immigration status by a uniformed officer] doesn’t mean a CRIMINAL infraction occurred – they may have overstayed their visa – meaning their presence is “illegal” – but that is a CIVIL infraction – not a CRIME – So does the officer have probable cause that a CRIME has been committed simply because his subject is a foreigner and has no Florida driver’s license, and has admitted to being an undocumented alien [“illegal”]?

          Do these cases come under the federal law mentioned above that specifically delegates enforcement power to LLE in limited circumstances? It doesn’t appear so: The officer did not discover in the course of the traffic stop, in either case, that the man had been convicted of a FELONY. Is there a Florida state statute – like in Arizona – that empowers local law enforcement to hold someone beyond the time it takes to carry out the mission of the traffic stop and embark upon a secondary stop in order to ascertain [check with ICE] the legal status of an alien? I haven’t see it — have you? UPDATE: That Arizona statute was challenged and it now requires that local law enforcement officers have federal authorization in order to ascertain alien status.

          You mention the US Constitution – yes in fact, rights under the Constitution are one of the things that are ultimately at play here and officers do swear to uphold the Constitution.

          Do we fight only to protect the civil rights of some people and not others? Do we pick and choose which constitutional rights to uphold depending on who is being protected? Aliens or Citizens? Immigrants [undocumented as well as documented] have the same protections of the US Constitution in terms of search and seizure. The same rights as the rest of us. SCOTUS declared it so.

          If it is ok with you and others to set those constitutional rights aside in the case of suspected “illegal aliens” [extending the detention time associated with a traffic stop – turning it into a second stop – enforcing federal law [arguably with no state or federal authorization to do so and certainly with no guidelines as the Sheriff refuses to supervise this], lacking probable cause that a CRIME has been committed and detaining traffic stop subjects for sometimes over an hour just sitting around waiting for Border Patrol to come.] then should it also be ok to set those constitutional protections aside when it is us [perhaps criminal or non-criminal] “Citizens” – who after all could also be committing some other infraction of the law outside the realm of the traffic stop?

          Should officers at a traffic stop ask me or you or the others who think this issue is so easy [“IT’S THE LAW!!!!”] about our tax returns, Sloan? Maybe LLE might notice – when he’s talking to one of “us” about how we didn’t stop behind the crosswalk at that stop sign back there – that we are driving a really nice car, but that when he asked where we worked we told him we had a crappy little low-wage job. That’s suspicious. Maybe we are working “off the books” for cash. Maybe he should call IRS and hold us until IRS can get an agent there to question us? Or maybe one of “us’ has really greasy hair and tatoos and the LLE thinks we probably do drugs. I mean just look at us. Maybe he should prolong the stop and check all of our pockets for drugs? Maybe he should also do that checking for drugs while those shouting [“HE’S ILLEGAL!!!!] are laying on the ground after getting hit by a car while riding THEIR bicycle? Last time I checked that would be a constitutional violation.

          Immigrants have constitutional rights — if we don’t care about THEIR constitutional rights – then we don’t care about ours either. When Deputies, Sheriffs, and former attorneys don’t even bother to try to read up on the jurisprudence – why shouldn’t we be next to have our rights set aside? Maybe cops should just check everyone’s pockets all the time… why not? “We” could be doing something criminal making us an “ILLEGAL!!!!!”

          Arizona v. US [SCOTUS 2012] About federal pre-emption of the entire field of immigration and allowing the state to legislate to allow their officers to enforce INS law without specific federal delegation in only extremely narrow circumstances. [Even then the state law enforcement personnel must be empowered by a state law that has passed the hurdle of federal pre-emption.]

          Gonzalez v City of Peoria [9th Cir 1983] cited in Arizona v US [SCOTUS 2012] [State statute authorized the officers to find out if person is illegally present – but they must have probable cause that there is a CRIMINAL violation.]

          Rodriguez v US [SCOTUS 2015] About going beyond the mission of the traffic stop even for a few minutes to investigate another crime, detain someone, etc.

          I’m still researching all this and am entirely capable of making mistakes – but – as I said – it is complicated and “they are ILLEGAL!!! Local law enforcement must enforce ALL law” is a major oversimplification of what is at issue. I do have two attorneys I am consulting with as well…

      2. That’s not what the SCOTUS ruled. It ruled the Federal Government has supremacy of authority over immigration enforcement, not soul authority. It stuck down 3 provisions in Arizona’s immigration law. But it also it “upheld Section 2… The provisions at issue required Arizona officers to make a “reasonable attempt” to determine the immigration status of any person stopped, detained, or arrested on a legitimate basis if “reasonable suspicion” existed that the person is an alien and is unlawfully present in the United States.”

        Please list the sentence you say are in 287(g) in which local police are “barred from enforcing federal immigration law”.

          1. The court didn’t rule that Arizona Police can investigate immigration status because there was a state statute directing it. It just upheld the state statute directing them to do so as not infringing on federal authority over immigration enforcement. And that statute appears to be far more invasive than what local deputies have engaged in.

            You still have provided no evidence to support your assertion that local police officers are prohibited by federal law from inquiring about immigration status. And FWIW, I still think you need a new “imigration expert”. 😉

        1. I beg to differ, “authority of state officers to make arrests for federal crimes is, absent federal statutory instruction, a matter of state law.” Arizona v. U.S. [2012]. The detention of these individuals [for purposes other than to fulfill the mission of the traffic stop] is considered a secondary stop and is considered an “arrest” [not free to go] that requires not only police powers to act in that realm but also probable cause. These guys were being investigated and detained for suspected INS violations – even if they had authority via a federal or state statute, they needed probable cause that a CRIMINAL infraction of INS code has occurred [illegal presence does not always equate to criminal violation] Probable cause that a criminal INS violation was being committed was not present in the case of this chef. In fact, Border Patrol confirmed with us that he had overstayed his visa — not entered illegally. [See the case law provided in response to Sloan.] I am still seeking out more counsel with attorneys knowledgable on these issues… Thanks for the back and forth! Appreciate it!

          1. Hi again. What’s your source for this quote. It’s not appearing in an online search, at least as is.

            Your reasoning that the officer violated the illegal’s right still isn’t based on any referenced rulings. You still have not found a court ruling prohibiting local police from detaining illegals when they are not part of the 287(g) or following state statutes. Your reference to Arizona v. US doesn’t support that either. This is now SCOTUS blog summarizes that ruling in common language (emphasis added):
            “…In the end, by a vote of 5-3, the Court nullified three of the four provisions because they either operated in areas solely controlled by federal policy, or they interfered with federal enforcement efforts. Nullified were sections making it a crime to be in Arizona without legal papers, making it a crime to apply for or get a job in the state, or allowing police to arrest individuals who had committed crimes that could lead to their deportation. THE COURT LEFT INTACT — BUT SUBJECT TO LATER CHALLENGES IN LOWER COURTS — A PROVISION REQUIRING POLICE TO ARREST AND HOLD ANYONE THEY BELIEVE HAS COMMITTED A CRIME AND WHOM THEY THINK IS IN THE COUNTRY ILLEGALLY, AND HOLDING THEM UNTIL THEIR IMMIGRATION STATUS COULD BE CHECKED WITH FEDERAL OFFICIALS.” http://www.scotusblog.com/case-files/cases/arizona-v-united-states/

            I understand you think there was no probable cause to ask the KW chef if he was illegal, but I think what he said and handed over in place of a driver’s license was probable cause, irrespective of his race.

            This ruling by the 9th Circuit, of all places, confirms that an arrest by local police of several illegal aliens in 1982 under similar circumstances was justified with no references to state statutes requiring it. http://openjurist.org/722/f2d/468/gonzales-v-city-of-peoria
            So absent a later ruling requiring there the be state statutory support for local police to arrest illegals, it’s legal.

          2. Look, I’m not saying I am an authority on the law, but I have spoken to two immigration attorneys and have done a lot of reading of case – law – some but not all provided by those attorneys. The quote is directly from the United States Supreme Court opinion Arizona v. United States [2012] https://www.oyez.org/cases/2011/11-182. You will find it directly ahead of the citation to the City of Peoria case. Any previous rulings by any circuit that don’t fit into the 2012 SCOTUS ruling are no longer valid. SCOTUS rulings are binding on all courts.

            The Arizona statute is just that – an Arizona statute. This is Florida.

            As to the Arizona statute it looks like it no longer exists in the original form because of further challenges [challenges that the US Supreme Court alluded to in Arizona v. US]. See here: http://immigration.findlaw.com/immigration-laws-and-resources/arizona-state-immigration-laws.html

            Today the Arizona statute in question states that the local law enforcement officer MUST BE AUTHORIZED BY THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT TO ASCERTAIN AN ALIEN’S IMMIGRATION STATUS.

            The statute also provides guidelines and safeguards. Here in Monroe County we have no state statute, no guidelines, no training, no federal authorization, and no oversight. As the Sheriff states — we have “no policy”:

            Excerpt from Arizona Law 11-1051:

            “E. In the implementation of this section, an alien’s immigration status may be determined by:

            1. A law enforcement officer who is authorized by the federal government to verify or ascertain an alien’s immigration status.

            2. The United States immigration and customs enforcement or the United States customs and border protection pursuant to 8 United States Code section 1373(c).”

            Here is the entire section of Arizona Law 11-1051 http://www.azleg.gov/search/oop/qfullhit.asp?CiWebHitsFile=/ars/11/01051.htm&CiRestriction=immigration:

            11-1051. Cooperation and assistance in enforcement of immigration laws; indemnification

            A. No official or agency of this state or a county, city, town or other political subdivision of this state may limit or restrict the enforcement of federal immigration laws to less than the full extent permitted by federal law.

            B. For any lawful stop, detention or arrest made by a law enforcement official or a law enforcement agency of this state or a law enforcement official or a law enforcement agency of a county, city, town or other political subdivision of this state in the enforcement of any other law or ordinance of a county, city or town or this state where reasonable suspicion exists that the person is an alien and is unlawfully present in the United States, a reasonable attempt shall be made, when practicable, to determine the immigration status of the person, except if the determination may hinder or obstruct an investigation. Any person who is arrested shall have the person’s immigration status determined before the person is released. The person’s immigration status shall be verified with the federal government pursuant to 8 United States Code section 1373(c). A law enforcement official or agency of this state or a county, city, town or other political subdivision of this state may not consider race, color or national origin in implementing the requirements of this subsection except to the extent permitted by the United States or Arizona Constitution. A person is presumed to not be an alien who is unlawfully present in the United States if the person provides to the law enforcement officer or agency any of the following:

            1. A valid Arizona driver license.

            2. A valid Arizona nonoperating identification license.

            3. A valid tribal enrollment card or other form of tribal identification.

            4. If the entity requires proof of legal presence in the United States before issuance, any valid United States federal, state or local government issued identification.

            C. If an alien who is unlawfully present in the United States is convicted of a violation of state or local law, on discharge from imprisonment or on the assessment of any monetary obligation that is imposed, the United States immigration and customs enforcement or the United States customs and border protection shall be immediately notified.

            D. Notwithstanding any other law, a law enforcement agency may securely transport an alien who the agency has received verification is unlawfully present in the United States and who is in the agency’s custody to a federal facility in this state or to any other point of transfer into federal custody that is outside the jurisdiction of the law enforcement agency. A law enforcement agency shall obtain judicial authorization before securely transporting an alien who is unlawfully present in the United States to a point of transfer that is outside of this state.

            E. In the implementation of this section, an alien’s immigration status may be determined by:

            1. A law enforcement officer who is authorized by the federal government to verify or ascertain an alien’s immigration status.

            2. The United States immigration and customs enforcement or the United States customs and border protection pursuant to 8 United States Code section 1373(c).

            F. Except as provided in federal law, officials or agencies of this state and counties, cities, towns and other political subdivisions of this state may not be prohibited or in any way be restricted from sending, receiving or maintaining information relating to the immigration status, lawful or unlawful, of any individual or exchanging that information with any other federal, state or local governmental entity for the following official purposes:

            1. Determining eligibility for any public benefit, service or license provided by any federal, state, local or other political subdivision of this state.

            2. Verifying any claim of residence or domicile if determination of residence or domicile is required under the laws of this state or a judicial order issued pursuant to a civil or criminal proceeding in this state.

            3. If the person is an alien, determining whether the person is in compliance with the federal registration laws prescribed by title II, chapter 7 of the federal immigration and nationality act.

            4. Pursuant to 8 United States Code section 1373 and 8 United States Code section 1644.

            G. This section does not implement, authorize or establish and shall not be construed to implement, authorize or establish the REAL ID act of 2005 (P.L. 109-13, division B; 119 Stat. 302), including the use of a radio frequency identification chip.

            H. A person who is a legal resident of this state may bring an action in superior court to challenge any official or agency of this state or a county, city, town or other political subdivision of this state that adopts or implements a policy that limits or restricts the enforcement of federal immigration laws, including 8 United States Code sections 1373 and 1644, to less than the full extent permitted by federal law. If there is a judicial finding that an entity has violated this section, the court shall order that the entity pay a civil penalty of not less than five hundred dollars and not more than five thousand dollars for each day that the policy has remained in effect after the filing of an action pursuant to this subsection.

            I. A court shall collect the civil penalty prescribed in subsection H of this section and remit the civil penalty to the state treasurer for deposit in the gang and immigration intelligence team enforcement mission fund established by section 41-1724.

            J. The court may award court costs and reasonable attorney fees to any person or any official or agency of this state or a county, city, town or other political subdivision of this state that prevails by an adjudication on the merits in a proceeding brought pursuant to this section.

            K. Except in relation to matters in which the officer is adjudged to have acted in bad faith, a law enforcement officer is indemnified by the law enforcement officer’s agency against reasonable costs and expenses, including attorney fees, incurred by the officer in connection with any action, suit or proceeding brought pursuant to this section in which the officer may be a defendant by reason of the officer being or having been a member of the law enforcement agency.

            L. This section shall be implemented in a manner consistent with federal laws regulating immigration, protecting the civil rights of all persons and respecting the privileges and immunities of United States citizens.

  5. The way I see this is the officer should have placed him under arrest and booked him for having no drivers license.. Has nothing to do with being legal or illegal. He then would need post bond to get released.Now perhaps is employer would post cash bond because no bonds / bail man would likely touch this case. Yes he could run and might manage to find another city to hide in. This is living proof that an illegal not only can get a job in Key West but also manage to buy a car . How did he get insurance required to even tag this car ? My guess is his employer knew he hired an illegal and paid far less.

    This is all part of the Key West problem. The trick is hire illegals cheap and not deduct income tax or anything. Likely paid cash and asked no questions. This is why legals can not earn a fair wage in Key West. Can we assume he was not insured ?

    Do question why he did not try to become a citizen. Also question if we have one MCSO deputy that is out to bust all the illegals. Yes he needs deported if illegal as that is the law. The deputy asked for a drivers license and he had none. He should not let him go and had the car impounded. Something is wrong here. I have no issue with him wanting to live here but do it legally or take the risk. My guess is we will find many more in near future.

  6. I find this case different than the injured bicyclist lying on the side of the road. The cyclist was struck by a SUV/Pick-Up truck. Before checking on the physical well-being of this injured person, before rendering any type of first-aid and before any effort was made to provide a minuscule degree of comfort for this wounded human being; an officer of the law started questioning and inquiring of him, as to his legal status. Perhaps this conduct is within the purview of the officers’ discretion, however, the timing was off.

    The legal status conversation has its place, but not until and after the life and well-being of the aggrieved party has been determined and attended to.

    In this video, during the traffic stop and upon the driver not producing a valid driver’s license; further questioning began of the driver by the law-enforcement officer. During this questioning the driver “Voluntarily” stated that he was in this country illegally. A crime had been committed and admitted to by the driver. What is the proper action for a law-enforcement officer? Would he or she be corrupt or negligent if they did not address this admission?

    Upon receiving this additional data, the officer communicated his findings to Federal Immigration Authorities. That in and of itself falls within the lines of appropriateness.

    The Secretary of Homeland Security, President Trump and Vice-President Pence have all said that their administration’s crack down on undocumented aliens would not entail arresting and deporting the cases that “The Blue Paper” has previously identified.

    In addition and for what it’s worth, the City of Key West has declared themselves a “Sanctuary City” of sorts. However, rather than grandstanding before their constituents, these Commissioners have not addressed, identified nor begun to iron out the relationship, joint polices and laws that would be applicable for protecting their citizens; working, living, walking, riding bicycles and driving in Key West; from an uncertain future that might include a prompt arrest and deportation, generated by a happenstance encounter with authorities. Whereby it was determined that their immigration papers were lacking, not up to date; or at least in one case, perfect in every way.

    The City Commissioners of Key West have done “Nothing” to guide and advance the cause of its citizens struggling to find a way to understand, adjust and comply with whatever the “New Immigration Directives Might Be”. These elected officials have not demanded clarity and due process for their most vulnerable and abused citizens.

    The emphasis of Trumps’ administration, tightening up on illegal’s, was identified in their own words, to be constructed so as to round up and rid America of identified gang members, convicted felons and other individuals deemed dangerous threats to our national well-being.

    As “The Blue Paper” has reported, with the law-abiding Haitian possessing legal papers, the injured bicyclist returning from work and the Chef of 16 years; there is a sharp and severe break down in how Trump’s immigration policy was stated and presented, and how it is actually being enforced.

    Failed leadership from the City Commission is responsible for the abuses endured by the immigrant population in Key West. These politically elected officials must stand, face off, clarify, remedy and protect their residents from enforcement abuses, as stipulated by President Trump and Homeland Security Secretary Kelly.

    That being said, as so many thousands of Americans, I’ve been directly affected by “Undocumented/Illegal Alien” violence and crime. Between 2008 and 2014, 40% of all murder convictions in Florida, were murders committed by criminal aliens. In New York 34% of all murders were committed by criminal aliens. In Arizona 17.8%. of all murders were committed by criminal aliens. Many are familiar with the San Francisco killing of Kate Steinle, for no reason whatsoever, by an “undocumented/ criminal alien”. The statistics I’ve given are just the crimes of those criminals that were captured and convicted.

    Furthermore, during those years criminal aliens accounted for 38% of all murder convictions in the five states of California, Texas, Arizona, Florida and New York; where illegal aliens constitute only 5.6% of the total population. The 38%, represents 7,085 murders out of a total of 18,643.

    At present, statistics gotten from a “liberal think tank” estimates that there are 820,000 illegal aliens in the United States with criminal convictions, including 690,000 illegal aliens currently residing on U.S. soil who have been convicted of a felony or “serious” misdemeanor.

    Why not aggressively seek, locate and apprehend those individuals. And leave working families alone.

    As it stands right now, I’m grateful for the courage and steadfastness of Sheriff Rick Ramsay, along with the men and women under his command. As a Chief Law-Enforcement Officer in Monroe County, his oath to protect and serve has not been swayed by political do-gooders and crusaders, who talk a good game, but whither on the firing line of life when it comes to delivering their promises and protecting the lives’ of the People they serve.

    Sheriff Ramsay’s oath entails protecting the citizens of Monroe County from the aforementioned violence and criminal conduct that I’ve identified. President Trump was elected via the many millions of citizens desiring the protections rendered by Sheriff Ramsay.
    If a law-enforcement officer during the performance of his/her duties comes across an individual who has committed a federal crime, should that officer turn a blind eye to that fact. Can this officer in good conscience go on their merry way, and pretend that they are unaware of this crime; given the horrifying data and murder that has been committed by “undocumented/illegal aliens”?

    Now, where do we stand? Sheriff Ramsay and his Deputies have held true to their oath. The Haitian family man appeared to be tricked and betrayed by a fraudulent federal system. Why haven’t our City Fathers interceded and looked into that violation?

    The injured cyclist, from where I sit, wasn’t dealt with properly; on a number of counts. Apparently, “The Chef” was turned over to the Feds, for them to do whatever it is that they are going to do to him.

    On these two instances, I believe “Discretion” was not served in the interest of “Justice”. Perhaps once the elephant in the room is identified “I’m Illegal”; additional probing and further inquiry could have eliminated the Bicyclist and Chef as the types of Threats described by the President and his Cabinet, that must be arrested on the spot, as their deportation proceedings begin.

    I cannot get into the mind of another regarding profiling and discriminatory practices. In positions where I’ve been responsible for the lives of others, I’ve closely watched and monitored myself and members of my squad. Unless convinced, I usually gave all the benefit of a doubt. Upon realization that these characteristics did in fact exist within a member of my Team, I pounced with finality and certainty.

    Given the difficult circumstances facing our nation, the world and law-enforcement; I adhere to the doctrine “better safe than sorry”. I respect, admire and appreciate Sheriff Ramsay’s leadership and principled stance on this sensitive matter.

    If elected and appointed leaders of Key West, will not safeguard the undocumented workers maintaining its’ viability; a petition of grievances must be formally drawn up, identifying the enforcement discrepancies existing between Trump’s stated doctrine on the arrest and deportation of “undocumented workers”; and in fact what has actually been going on, as it relates to this matter. Most, if not all of the leg work has already been done by “The Blue Paper”.

    Upon completion of the “petition of grievances”, this document must be certifiably delivered to both state senators, congressman of the district, homeland security secretary and president trump. Media coverage; mainstream, cable and Internet will further insure and record the transfer of said document.

    Given our “Theater” boarders Little Haiti in Miami, I’ve witnessed the courageous and bold actions taken by Haitian Leaders, as they’ve made President Trump and Homeland Security aware of their power and resolve, to be treated fairly and humanely. Their Light has begun to extinguish the Darkness.

    A firm, fair, consistent, enforceable and just Immigration Policy is not out of our reach. A Law that balances sovereignty, safety and the decency embodied within the principles of our Declaration and Constitution can be had right now.

    This immigration mess didn’t happen overnight. It hasn’t occurred in a vacuum. If not immediately addressed and worked out, it will be our undoing; tearing us apart from within.

    1. Well, John, looks to me that white Americans. starting with the current White House occupant, and moving down to the 2 major political parties, moving sideways to all sort of factions and splinters, many members of which say they represent God and Jesus, are doing a great job of tearing America apart from within and overseas with US corporate profit driven wars?

      Wonder how they would handle dark-skinned Jesus from the Gospels beaming back down into Key West today, or Washington, D.C., without any papers whatsoever, and saying in English, Spanish, Latin, Italian, French, German, Dutch, Chinese, Vietnamese, Korean, Japanese, Hindu, Bengali, Arabic, Farsi, Portuguese, and doing what he reportedly said and did in the Gospels? 🙂

    2. Thank you John!

      I need to take a better look at those violent crime stats you quoted but I will say I am very suspicious of the rhetoric out there about the undocumented aliens committing more crimes than other residents.

      For example see this:

      David FitzGerald, PhD, Co-Director of the Center for Comparative Immigration Studies, in a July 7, 2015 article, “This Proves Donald Trump Is Lying: Here Are the Actual Facts on Immigrants and Crime,” available at salon.com, stated:

      “Here is what you need to know: [legal and undocumented] immigrants are less likely to commit crimes than people born in the United States…

      The 2000 census shows that in all racial categories, immigrants are much less likely to be incarcerated than their U.S.-born counterparts. Men born in Mexico had an incarceration rate five times lower than the U.S.-born population as a whole…

      If immigrants were disproportionately likely to commit crimes, we would expect to see higher crime rates when and where immigrants arrive. Yet the opposite holds true. From 1994 to 2007, the number of immigrants per capita living in the United States rose from about 9 to 13 percent of the population. At the same time, FBI reports show that the rate of violent crime declined 34.2 percent. The property crime rate fell 26.4 percent.

      Cities with large immigrant populations such as Chicago, Los Angeles, Miami, and New York also experienced declining crime rates during this period. The 2008 California study found that cities with relatively larger inflows of immigrants between 2000 and 2005 tended to see lower rates of violent crime. Contrary to the image of crime spilling across the border, FBI records show that rates of murder and other violent crimes are lower in U.S. cities within 100 miles of the border. The lowest murder rate of any U.S. city over 500,000 is El Paso, Texas.”

      July 7, 2015 – David FitzGerald, PhD

      More on how the Sheriff is guiding [or not] his Deputies on this issue later…

  7. Naja & Arnaud,

    You have the greatest of all publications. Nowhere else are issues of importance discussed with integrity, mutual respect and attention to detail. The sanitizing uplift gotten from your NEWSPAPER assures that Free Speech will not go away without a fight. As editors of “The Blue Paper”, the chances that our Republic will survive its undoing have significantly increased.

    I’m honored to be a small part of the discourse and debate. I sincerely value the well written comments proffered by the intelligent and deliberative contributors discussing this article.

    Everyone has biases. They are present all the time. Sometimes more noticeable than others. All that we’ve lived through and experienced has molded and brought us to this particular “evolutionary moment”. We understand ourselves and the world in which we live, in a particular manner. It’s inescapable.


    Dr. Ronald Mortensen reports in his article “Most illegal aliens routinely commit felonies” published in “The Hill” (3/29/17) that there are methodological problems with some of the studies cited. Instead of using official crime data, these reports use surveys. For example “The Sentencing Project” measures “crime and related behavior” based on self-reporting. The CATO Institute uses “accounts of behavior” gotten from the United States Census American Community Survey (ACS). There isn’t any incentive to identify oneself as a criminal.

    The Social Security Administration and New York Times report that approximately 75 percent of illegal aliens have fraudulently obtained Social Security numbers which is a felony. Furthermore, the Los Angeles Times reports that up to 8 million of 11.1 million (72 percent) illegal aliens commit job-related felonies.

    The Government Accounting Office (GAO) released two unsettling reports in 2005 on criminal aliens who are in prison for committing crimes in the United States, and issued an updated report in 2011.

    The first report found that criminal aliens, both legal and illegal, make up 27 percent of all federal prisoners. Yet non-citizens are only about nine percent of the nation’s adult population. Thus, judging by the numbers in federal prisons alone, non-citizens commit federal crimes at three times the rate of citizens.

    The findings in the second report are even more disturbing. It reviewed the criminal histories of 55,322 aliens in federal or state prisons and local jails who “entered the country illegally.” Those illegal aliens were arrested 459,614 times, an average of 8.3 arrests per illegal alien, and committed almost 700,000 criminal offenses, an average of roughly 12.7 offenses per illegal alien.

    The 2011 GAO report continues; the criminal histories of 251,000 criminal aliens showed that they had committed close to three million criminal offenses. Sixty-eight percent of those in federal prison and 66 percent of those in state prisons were from Mexico. Their offenses ranged from homicide and kidnapping to drugs, rape, burglary, and larceny.

    Once again, these statistics are not fully representative of crimes committed by illegal aliens — this report only reflects the criminal histories of aliens who were in prison. If there were a way to include all crimes committed by criminal aliens, the numbers would likely be higher since prosecutors often drop criminal charges against an illegal alien if immigration authorities will deport the alien.

    The GAO report also highlights methodological flaws in using survey data from a national sample. Another key factor highlighted in the GAO reports is that criminal aliens from Mexico disproportionally represented all incarcerations. And that most arrests are made in the three border states of California, Texas, and Arizona.
    In sum, it has not been proven that illegal aliens commit crimes at a lesser rate than either native-born or naturalized American citizens. In fact, existing data may support the opposite conclusion.

    Is my submission “Fake News”? Are Dr. Fitzgerald’s studies free and clear of any and all bias and misrepresentation?

    This issue is filled with emotion and partisanship. My blood family is embroiled in the fear and uncertainty brought on by this barbaric tumult. If we don’t get it right, families and children will continue to be broken and lives will be destroyed. Dangling our statistics and experts in one another’s faces, we’ll self-righteously proclaim victory, while stepping over the smashed bodies of those seeking a better way of life for their babies.

    Our Show’s opening Thursday in Miami. I will be visiting Little Haiti and speaking with their Leaders. Perhaps some Ideas, Light and Strategies will be developed…

    Blessings, Respect & Love…

    1. Thank you, John and Naja, for your loving and complex analysis of our national conundrum.

      Ben, I disagree with making this a simple matter of breaking the law, and the alien bears all the responsibility and punishment.

      Remember, it is we Americans who have created and benefit from the aliens’ torturous journey and low-paid labor. Businesses whose profits are higher. Consumers whose restaurant meals are cheaper. The only Americans who are hurt are minimum-wage workers, and they have authored their own misfortune by either not voting for candidates who would have generally supported workers’ rights and higher wages or, worse, voting for tax-cutting, union-hating conservatives (it is well documented that a large proportion of people who vote for a higher wage then also vote for a legislator who will deny any such bill).

      Just as we have created a horrific narco-state in Mexico with our insane drug laws, it is we Americans, employers and consumers alike, who have created and benefit from the aliens’ hard-working presence. To simply blame them, and make them bear all the burdens of crime and punishment, is shallow and immoral.

      1. In 2016 the Justice Department “boosted” the penalty for hiring illegal immigrants and engaging in immigration-related unfair employment practices.
        The minimum penalty imposed by the DOJ for the unlawful employment of immigrants rose from $375 to $539 [whoopty-doo!], while the maximum fine went from $3,200 to $4,313 [whoopty-doo! again].

        Violators facing multiple charges also would be subject to a new maximum penalty of $21,563 for hiring illegal immigrants. Does that mean what I think it means? A hotel with hundreds of illegal employees faces a maximum fine of $21,563! Are employers who hire illegal aliens doing exactly what is expected of them?

  8. No place in that conversation thread Ben started for me to respond to your tirade, Naja.

    The reason I asked you to tell your readers how Arnaud became a US Citizen was because I felt your readers deserved to know that Arnaud went through that process, which the two illegal immigrants you have been reporting did not. Still, you have not told your readers how Arnaud became a US Citizen.

    I felt, still feel, your readers deserve to hear Wayne Dapser weigh in re the comments Ben started.

    The Arizona case stemmed from an Arizona statute, not from a random traffic incident, in which information of crimes came out during the traffic incident.

    I think every law enforcement officer in America has an affirmative duty to report to the proper law enforcement agency any crime the law enforcement officer knows has been committed.

    So, if a KW police officer stops a drunk driver on Palm Avenue, who, in his drunk state, blurts out he works for Sloppy Joe’s and does not report his tips to the IRS, thanking that will cause the police officer to laugh and let him go, then that police officer has an affirmative duty to report that to the IRS.

    You and Arnaud asked me in your home after you published the first illegal immigrant article, the bicyclist struck by a pedestrian, what did I think was really going on with that deputy and the Sheriff Department? I said I it was rooted in 9/11. Right after 9/11, law enforcement officers in Key West were all on edge. Homeless people caught the brunt of it, and have been catching the brunt of it ever since.

    It’s bigger than that. Most Americans have been on edge since 9/11.

    How do you resolve that? I see no way.

    If I were an illegal immigrant in Key West, I would go see Wayne Dapser and try to get myself legal.

    If I were an illegal immigrant, for sure I would not be driving a car in Key West with no driver’s license.

    I still feel you are too revved up about this, Naja, which causes me to think these two cases have punched old Naja buttons regarding something else.

    1. Sloan, Amazing how little interest you have in the law for someone who was trained in the law. Sorry if my frustration is showing. This has nothing to do with how an alien may apply to INS to obtain a green card and later become a naturalized citizen. Which is what my husband did. Not interesting and not relevant.

      Now back to the issue we are trying to learn about. The Arizona statute, in its current form [after more challenges came along — challenges that were alluded to by the US Supreme Court when they issued their opinion in Arizona v US in 2012] requires that Arizona officers have federal authorization to ascertain the immigration status of an alien. So, even in Arizona it looks like we are back to ICE’s 287(g) program.

      Here in Monroe County: These men were asked by a local LEO, who is not authorized by the federal government to investigate or enforce federal immigration law, about their legal status. It looked to me as though they did not just sing it out spontaneously. What I saw on the body cam footage was a uniformed Sheriff’s deputy asking them about their immigration status while they were being detained on a routine traffic stop.

  9. If your husband could do it, and did it, why didn’t these two Hispanic men do it?

    For me, the first case, the white woman running over a Hispanic bicyclist in a well marked crosswalk and the deputy siding all the way with the woman motorist and not seeming to give a shit how the man she ran over was doing, other than he was not legally in America, is not the same case, nor in the same apple bin, as this 2nd case.

    This Hispanic illegal immigrant of long standing brazenly drives a car around Key West for how long without a driver’s license? Years? Finally, he gets caught at it and what did he expect would happen when he was not able to produce a driver’s license? Or that he had one but had left it at home, or he had recently lost it?

    For a fact, if I had been that deputy, on learning the driver of that car had no driver’s license at all, I would have asked him if he was an American citizen. Or if he was a legal visitor.

    And, I am not someone who remains freaked out by 911. I never was freaked out by 911, other than by the way George W. Bush and most Americans, including most Democrats, responded, which was seriously dumb and America will never recover from it.

    I still think you are too revved up and there is something else in play.

    I still think you are ignoring what really is in play with local law enforcement and most white people in America. They are terrified of terrorists, and they are tired of being impacted by cheap foreign labor, and those are things all illegal immigrants face, regardless of it being right or wrong. It is what it is, and that is why Donald Trump is president. For now.

      1. Right, and he took that to be his right to have a de facto driver’s license.

        Americans cannot drive cars without a driver’s license, but it’s okay for illegal aliens to do it?

        That’s how you come across, Naja.

        He should have stayed away from driving a car.

        He should have stayed under the radar.

        He should have walked, used a bicycle, or rode city buses, or gotten rides with friends or fellow employees.

        He might be a great person to know.

        But he knew what he was doing, and he got caught, and now the deputy who caught him and Sheriff Ramsay are your villains.

        I have had my share of trouble with deputies and city police officers hassling me for being homeless, which is about the same as being an illegal immigrant when they won’t let you sleep at night, or during the day, or lie down and rest, but I can’t make the deputy the villain in this case.

        I suppose if every illegal alien in Key West and nearby were deported, the Key West economy would tank?

        I still think the 2 ICE cases somehow poked into tender parts of your life history and you are too close to it.

        1. I give up. You are simply incapable of staying on point. I’m not looking for villains and angels. Facts Sloan. Laws Sloan. Yes people who drive without driver’s licenses face the consequences. Everyone comprehends that. This is about whether or not our Sheriff should indeed have a policy other than ‘my deputies have discretion’. And it’s about whether the Sheriff would, by law, need to have his guys trained and deputized by ICE if they are going to be running around asking people whether or not they are legal. That is what everyone we interviewed in our piece was talking about: Dapser, Kaufman, Payne. Guess you missed that. There is an army of people out there who do understand that those are the issues that need discussion here. Not you. O.K. No problem — but I give up. I’m done. No more patience. Done.

          1. Naja, you well know I don’t run with the herd.

            This is far bigger than what you have framed, and that’s what I’ve been speaking to.

            Of course the Sheriff should have a uniform policy for his deputies dealing with illegal alients.

            Last night, what appeared to me to be an illegal alien came into the Key West police station front lobby, wanting help with not being able to get along with his roommates. His English was poor. Two male officers without little or no Spanish came out and tried tot speak with him. Then a Spanish speaking female officer arrived. The three officers were friendly with the man. Sounded to me the three officers thought the man was in illegal alien, but they did not query him about that and told him to come back this morning and someone would try to help him deal with his situation, including being able to get his belongings and move out.

            Lawyers like cases which have what is called “good facts.” This case has what is called “bad facts.” Due to the illegal alien being caught driving a car and he did not even have a driver’s licence. That is disrespectful, of America. That is in America’s face. That is generally thought to be dangerous, which is why there is a law saying you have to have a driver’s licence to drive a car in America.

            The struck bicyclist case had what lawyers call “good facts,” based on what all lI read about that case in the blue paper. It went viral, because it was outrageous that the deputy was not concerned, apparently, about the bicyclist’s injuries and seemed to have sided with the white lady motorist, given their might be litigation.

            I still think Wayne Dapser should be engaging the blue paper readers who do not agree with him and you, Naja.

          2. I wonder if Sheriff Ramsay has not created a uniform policy is because, if he does, it will be on the side of Donald Trump and ICE, which might cause a heap bigger fire storm? Hillary Clinton carried Key West, Donald Trump carried the rest of the Florida Keys.

  10. Whew! What a discussion.
    If I read right, the bicyclist who was struck in a crosswalk by a white lady SUV driver, was ludicrously charged with “Obstructing Traffic” by the obviously over-biased policeman.
    The officer made the injured victim incriminate himself, against American law, by making him declare his immigration status. [!]
    Oh, the white lady who wasn’t in full control of her big vehicle and caused the crash? She was allowed to drive away from the scene soon after she hit him. She wasn’t asked about her immigration status. ;=]
    I personally feel that ALL immigrants must either get legal or get out. But that doesn’t make it open hunting season on them, does it?

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