Denver and all Colorado are lawless on immigration

After President Trump announced a since-delayed nationwide crackdown on illegal immigrants, Denver declared it will not work with Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Yet it isn’t just one city that is lawless: Thanks to a law signed by Gov. Jared Polis, all Colorado law enforcement officers are barred from cooperating with federal officials in removing dangerous illegal immigrants from our country. This violates federal law, puts citizens in danger, and, contrary to the assertion of Democrats, is far from compassionate.

Denver has been a sanctuary city for over 20 years. In 2014, the Department of Homeland Security put Denver in the top 10 jurisdictions that fail to observe “Immigration Detainers” that DHS provides when it learns a “removable alien” is held. The notice “requests” Denver “notify DHS as early as practicable (at least 48 hours if possible) before the alien is released,” so they could take custody. But Denver rejected outright 194 notice requests.

Worse, in 2017, Denver stopped sending DHS its daily booking sheets, which violates a federal law that makes it a felony to “conceal, harbor, or shield from detection, [an] alien in any place, including any building.”

Denver’s approach bore its bitterest fruit on Feb. 7, 2017, with the murder of 32-year-old Tim Cruz. One of the killers was Ever Valles, declared by DHS “an immigration enforcement priority” because he entered the United States illegally, and is a “known gang member” with a “criminal history.” Thus, in October of 2016, when DHS learned of Valles’ arrest for car theft and weapons possession, it asked Denver to be notified of his imminent release. Nonetheless, on Dec. 20, Valles was freed at midnight after Denver faxed DHS a notice at 11:33 p.m. DHS got the fax at 12:37 a.m.

Just one week later, Valles killed Cruz.

Despite this tragedy, earlier this year, Democrats, in control of Colorado’s General Assembly, proposed a bill making the Denver ordinance state law, that is, turning Colorado, with California and the state of Washington, into a “sanctuary state.”

By William Perry Pendley for WASHINGTON EXAMINER
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