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*** UPDATED x1 *** Kankakee County makes huge money off of immigration detainment

Wednesday, Feb 26, 2020

* ILGOP…

The Illinois Sheriffs’ Association held a press conference today with several legislators where they revealed a new policy by the Illinois Department of Corrections ordered by Governor Pritzker. The policy change prohibits local authorities from communicating with ICE officials when they release felons who are undocumented. ILGOP Chairman Tim Schneider released the following statement in response:

    “Governor Pritzker has decided to prioritize the release of violent criminals onto the streets over the safety of our communities and families. His decision is appalling. This is the policy implication behind the Governor’s apparent belief that illegal immigrants who commit felonies should not be deported from this country. That is a misguided and radical belief espoused by presidential wannabes like Bernie Sanders.

    Should any of these illegal immigrants and convicted felons commit another violent crime upon release, Governor Pritzker must explain why he put their freedom over the safety of the victims and all Illinoisans.”

* Background

In 2017, then-Gov. Bruce Rauner, a Republican, signed into law the Trust Act, which prohibits state and local police in Illinois from arresting or detaining a person solely because of their immigration status, or based on a federal immigration detainer. Under the law, authorities are able to hold someone if a judge has issued a warrant.

* The main critic of the new policy is this sheriff

“I’m here to sound the alarm that a recent policy change by the Illinois Department of Corrections is making our communities and neighborhoods less safe,” Kankakee County Sheriff Mike Downey said Tuesday at a Capitol news conference with House and Senate Republicans.

Downey said his department contracts with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement to coordinate the pickup, transfer and detainment of people released from state prison but still subject to federal detainers due to immigration status.

Prior to the change, IDOC would transfer them to the Pontiac Correctional Center, where the Kankakee County Sherriff’s Department would pick them up an hold them at the Jerome Combs Detention Center in Kankakee County until their immigration case is reviewed and adjudicated.

But because of the policy change, which sheriffs said they learned of indirectly on Jan. 30, all such transfers at the request of ICE are no longer allowed, Downey said.

* From 2018

Two county jails in Illinois set a record for receiving $959,000 in federal revenue.

Kankakee County’s jails in May broke its previous 2013 record when it received $957,000 in outside inmate bed rental money, the Daily Journal reported.

Nearly all of the money comes from federal agencies. Kankakee County gets $80 daily for each inmate from the feds

* Illinois Coalition for Immigrant & Refugee Rights…


ICIRR supports the new IDOC policy and any further efforts by Governor Pritzker’s administration to distance state and local governments in Illinois from federal immigration enforcement. IDOC and other law enforcement agencies are barred by the Illinois TRUST Act (which ICIRR led the campaign to pass) from holding any individual solely based on a warrant or detainer issued by US Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

To be clear, individuals are being released because they have done their time. Sheriffs Downey and Childress are claiming that: 1) state law should be violated, and 2 ) the time served that the criminal justice system deems appropriate is insufficient and there should be different standards depending on a person’s place of birth. It is highly problematic that these law enforcement agents don’t believe in actual enforcement of the law.

We are pleased that IDOC is complying with the TRUST Act, and urge all other law enforcement departments throughout the state to follow suit. We will continue to work with Governor Pritzker to ensure that our state is welcoming for all.

* PASO…

West Suburban Action Project applauds Governor Pritzker’s compliance with the TRUST Act, a law signed by former Governor Rauner that PASO advocated for and passed in 2017. Limiting local law enforcement collaboration with immigration agencies improves the safety and security of all Illinois residents. All law enforcement agencies are bound by and should comply with the TRUST Act that prohibits unlawful arrests. Local law enforcement may not comply with requests from immigration authorities to hold immigrants, unless immigration agencies comply with the Constitution and present lawful criminal warrants. Immigration enforcement agencies are appropriated billions of dollars each year and Illinois agencies should not bear the cost of enforcing federal immigration laws. Illinois residents released by the Illinois Department of Corrections (IDOC) have served their sentences and should be able to reintegrate into their families and society to live full and dignified laws irrespective of immigration status. Communities of color should not be further penalized with immigration enforcement. PASO and our partner organizations will continue to work closely with the Governor to ensure that Illinois is the most welcoming state in the country.

* National Immigrant Justice Center…

NIJC applauds Governor J.B. Pritzker for recognizing that we are all safer when our leaders embrace policies that protect and support community wholeness and family unity. Ending cooperation between the Illinois Department of Corrections (IDOC) and Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) is in accordance with the Illinois TRUST Act, a law that NIJC advocated for when it was passed in 2017. Imposing the second punishment of deportation and exile on those who have already made their way through the criminal legal system disrupts family units and destabilizes communities, leaving us all less secure. We are pleased that our state is upholding the rule of law, and will continue to work to ensure Illinois is a welcoming state, free of the reckless and racially charged immigration enforcement practices that terrorize our communities.

Also, if you click here you can search for state inmates and get a projected discharge date. As the governor’s office notes, ICE could just use that search.

*** UPDATE *** Press release…

The Illinois Legislative Latino Caucus released the following statement in response to the Republican attempts to misrepresent legislation preventing the extrajudicial detention of immigrants:

“While we have made tremendous progress to protect the civil rights of all Illinois residents, the Republican Party is falsely claiming that individuals that are a danger to the public are being released back into communities. This is a bigoted lie and they should be ashamed of themselves. Ultimately this comes down to the fact that local police departments are no longer able to benefit from their lucrative contracts with ICE to oppress immigrants. The Trust Act ensures that people are treated fairly in our criminal justice system, so that once they serve their time, they are released just like everyone else. That’s it.

“Every time people of color have achieved a step toward equity under the law, there are those who actively seek to undermine that progress through fearmongering and grossly distorting the truth. This sort of rhetoric has no place in Illinois and it must called out for what it is, inflaming racial tensions for the sake of political gain and preservation.

“We will continue to stand with those on the front line doing the work to protect our communities and do the work in the Legislature to advance laws that reflect our values of equality and justice for all.”

- Posted by Rich Miller        

27 Comments
  1. - Thomas Paine - Wednesday, Feb 26, 20 @ 9:45 am:

    Why doesn’t the TRUST Act preclude Kankakee County from entering into agreements with ICE? Seems like it should.


  2. - fs - Wednesday, Feb 26, 20 @ 9:49 am:

    The 2017 Trust act was based on a Federal Court ruling from Chicago that said immigration detainers Are invalid unless issued by proper warrant. But nothing in the 2017 Trust Act precludes the County from picking up the phone and calling ice


  3. - efudd - Wednesday, Feb 26, 20 @ 9:54 am:

    The hue and cry over public safety is used to cloak money?

    Gee, that’s new.


  4. - Donnie Elgin - Wednesday, Feb 26, 20 @ 9:58 am:

    “you can search for state inmates and get a projected discharge date”

    the IDOC inmate search tool is not instantly updated and release dates are “projected”. Have a friend serving time and when he was moved between two facilities his IDOC profile took a few days to reflect the change.

    sample

    ADMISSION / RELEASE / DISCHARGE INFO
    Admission Date:
    Projected Parole Date:
    Last Paroled Date:
    Projected Discharge Date:


  5. - Annonin' - Wednesday, Feb 26, 20 @ 10:11 am:

    Almost $1 mill for taxi service and a little lockdown work. Sweet. And of course this happening in K3 an eternal temple of clean livin’
    We realize they are on the dole becuase private jail is there, but it is a a pretty rich coincidence. Wonder whoi fills the Rx’s?


  6. - BC - Wednesday, Feb 26, 20 @ 10:13 am:

    There is a relatively simple solution to this for ICE. They could go to federal court and get a warrant from a federal judge ordering IDOC to turn an inmate over to the ICE upon release. IDOC would have to honor that.


  7. - Donnie Elgin - Wednesday, Feb 26, 20 @ 10:18 am:

    “Two county jails in Illinois set a record for receiving $959,000 in federal revenue”

    I assumed it was a good thing to fund local gov’t.


  8. - efudd - Wednesday, Feb 26, 20 @ 10:22 am:

    BC-
    ICE has been doing that for years. IDOC releases inmates with detainers to the feds and couldn’t care less who picks them up as long as they are out of the institution on their release date.
    Often it is local sheriffs’ departments picking them up, and as stated by Annonin, basically acting as taxi services.
    And getting paid to do so, this is about money.


  9. - Last Bull Moose - Wednesday, Feb 26, 20 @ 10:28 am:

    Can ICE take custody prior to release? Ensures a safe transfer and saves us money.


  10. - don the legend - Wednesday, Feb 26, 20 @ 10:46 am:

    ===In 2017, then-Gov. Bruce Rauner, a Republican, signed into law the Trust Act, which prohibits state and local police in Illinois from arresting or detaining a person solely because of their immigration status, or based on a federal immigration detainer. Under the law, authorities are able to hold someone if a judge has issued a warrant.===

    I’m just guessing but maybe the good sheriff’s was a Raunerite.


  11. - WW - Wednesday, Feb 26, 20 @ 10:47 am:

    As I understand it if your Police agency receives Federal funds they are required to give advanced notice prior to release

    https://abc7ny.com/politics/trump-can-withhold-grants-to-nyc-nj-in-immigration-fight-court/5969086/


  12. - Winderweezle - Wednesday, Feb 26, 20 @ 10:55 am:

    Can’t it all be said the the federal government saves millions by partnering with local jails for housing and transportation?

    There is a county jail in (almost?) all of our 102 counties. The feds can’t support or afford pre-trial detention spread all over every state. They therefore contract with the counties.

    Sheesh, we scream for efficiency, cooperation and communication between government entities until it happens.


  13. - Winderweezle - Wednesday, Feb 26, 20 @ 10:58 am:

    Sorry- first line above should read “can’t it also be said”

    Want to add that these contracts and the federal requirements for these contracts have led to better conditions in jails for local detainees too.


  14. - Annonin' - Wednesday, Feb 26, 20 @ 11:21 am:

    “I’m just guessing but maybe the good sheriff’s was a Raunerite.”
    Guessin’ the’good sheriff” recycled his SUV every year with the $$$ from the G. Now he has to put more miles on.


  15. - Elmer Keith - Wednesday, Feb 26, 20 @ 11:26 am:

    “Should any of these illegal immigrants and convicted felons commit another violent crime upon release, Governor Pritzker must explain why he put their freedom over the safety of the victims and all Illinoisans.” Pritzker has made the political decision that it’s okay to sacrifice the lives of some Illinois citizens, if that policy provides him with votes from non-citizen activist groups. He doesn’t care, he has state police bodyguards paid for by us, the taxpayers.

    What I find interesting is that Pritzker wants FOID card holders in Illinois to be fingerprinted, and to seize the guns of those with revoked FOID cards using militarized SWAT teams, because those Illinois citizens “may” commit a crime at some point in the future. “Pre-crime” laws here are for citizens, but not criminal aliens.


  16. - Demoralized - Wednesday, Feb 26, 20 @ 11:52 am:

    ==Pritzker has made the political decision that it’s okay to sacrifice the lives of some Illinois citizens==

    Hyperbole much?

    == and to seize the guns of those with revoked FOID cards using militarized SWAT teams==

    Man, you’re on a roll with your hyperbole.
    What in the world are you talking about? I’d love to know how you came up with that one.


  17. - Demoralized - Wednesday, Feb 26, 20 @ 11:55 am:

    Two things:

    1. Once a person’s sentence has been completed they are released from prison - citizen or non-citizen. To suggest that somehow the non-citizen criminals are more dangerous than a citizen criminal being released is ridiculous. Or are we now making that argument that a criminal that has served their time shouldn’t be released from prison. Because that certainly sounds like the argument that is being made.

    2. Nothing is preventing the feds from picking these people up and deporting them. The only thing Illinois is doing is saying that we aren’t going to help them with their immigration enforcement. That’s not our job anyway.


  18. - fs - Wednesday, Feb 26, 20 @ 12:10 pm:

    == The only thing Illinois is doing is saying that we aren’t going to help them with their immigration enforcement. That’s not our job anyway.==

    The Feds can’t force us to help them, directly…but they can potentially withhold a lot of grant money from agencies who refuse to help them. That’s a question working its way through the Courts now, with differing opinions.


  19. - Perrid - Wednesday, Feb 26, 20 @ 12:26 pm:

    Is the Latino Caucus saying that released criminals aren’t a threat to communities? I mean it general, because that’s the only way you cam call it a “lie”. It’s bigoted to worry about released immigrants and not citizens, but I think plenty of folks would consider any released prisoner to be a “threat”. Our society doesn’t do well with helping people rehabilitate themselves.


  20. - Rich Miller - Wednesday, Feb 26, 20 @ 12:29 pm:

    ===I think plenty of folks would consider any released prisoner to be a “threat”===

    OK, but you can’t keep most people locked up forever.


  21. - Jibba - Wednesday, Feb 26, 20 @ 12:31 pm:

    “…is falsely claiming that individuals that are a danger to the public are being released back into communities…”

    It is true if you consider felons a danger. And some will be. True, noncitizen felons were treated differently than felons citizens, but if you don’t want to get deported, don’t commit a felony.


  22. - OpentoDiscusssion - Wednesday, Feb 26, 20 @ 12:50 pm:

    - OpentoDiscusssion - Wednesday, Feb 26, 20 @ 12:27 pm:

    @fs

    Feb 26, 2020 11:34 AM EST
    NEW YORK (AP) — “The Trump administration can withhold millions of dollars in law enforcement grants to force states to cooperate with U.S. immigration enforcement, a federal appeals court in New York ruled Wednesday in a decision that conflicted with three other federal appeals courts.”

    All illegal aliens should be deported. They are here illegally. Fines and potential jail time need to be significantly increased in order to prevent spurious court actions that block the immigration courts. Those who truly believe they are being deported when they have the legal right to be here can still seek judicial redress. Those who are just trying to block the court system would know full well that when they lose they will be held fully accountable.

    Visa ‘overstays’ must be addressed with full force and employers who hire illegal aliens must be very heavily fined and even jailed.

    In addition, we need a photo, bio metric National ID card. Would not be carried on the individual but it be available. Should be used for voting as well.

    Then much of the above will not be nearly the problem as it is now.


  23. - Occasional Quipper - Wednesday, Feb 26, 20 @ 1:11 pm:

    Serious question: During the press conference yesterday the point was made that illegal immigrants convicted of sex crimes are not required to register as sex offenders. Is that true, or was that just a scare tactic?


  24. - Name Withheld - Wednesday, Feb 26, 20 @ 1:21 pm:

    Donnie Elgin @ 10:18 AM

    “Two county jails in Illinois set a record for receiving $959,000 in federal revenue”

    ===I assumed it was a good thing to fund local gov’t. ===

    It is a good thing to fund local government. But I don’t think the police department is intended to be a direct revenue generator for any municipality. When law enforcement is viewed as a profit center, the motives of law enforcement change from keeping peace to finding new ways to create revenue.


  25. - IT Stats Guy - Wednesday, Feb 26, 20 @ 6:24 pm:

    Weird, I don’t see my post?


  26. - Michael Feltes - Wednesday, Feb 26, 20 @ 9:43 pm:

    “I don’t think the police department is intended to be a direct revenue generator for any municipality. When law enforcement is viewed as a profit center, the motives of law enforcement change from keeping peace to finding new ways to create revenue.”

    Exactly. The DoJ investigation of Ferguson, Missouri was an illuminating case study on how that attitude corrupts local government and destroys the trust of its citizens. Let’s keep it on their side of the Mississippi, please.


  27. - Cool Papa Bell - Thursday, Feb 27, 20 @ 10:36 am:

    - Occasional Quipper - Wednesday, Feb 26, 20 @ 1:11 pm:

    Serious question: During the press conference yesterday the point was made that illegal immigrants convicted of sex crimes are not required to register as sex offenders. Is that true, or was that just a scare tactic?

    No they are required. Just as any felon is that has that history. Watching the PC that was couched as these people are already criminals, perhaps evading deportation so we’ve made up our mind for them and they won’t register.

    But they are legally required too. Not following the law would get you tossed in prison. Kinda like how they wound up there in the first place.


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