The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department (LASD) issued a press release stating they are “extremely concerned” about the possibility of individuals being held improperly on U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) detainers.
In response, the LASD has initiated new protocols to further decrease this occurrence.
According to officials, any department member receiving notice of an inmate claiming United States citizenship with an ICE detainer shall make immediate notification to their supervisor, who in turn, will contact the on-duty ICE representative for investigation.
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ICE provides 24/7 operational phone numbers for Law Enforcement Agencies (LEA) like the LASD.
“They have assured the LASD that, upon notification, they will expeditiously investigate all claims of citizenship status. Once the investigation has been conducted, and when applicable, the LASD will be advised that a hold has been released by ICE. The inmate will then be immediately processed for release if there are no other charges pending,” the LASD press release stated.
On December 26, ICE began using a new detainer form that will be used to notify an LEA that ICE intends to assume custody of an individual in the LEA’s custody.
The detainer serves as a request that the LEA notify ICE before releasing a person alleged to be in the country illegally and maintain custody of the subject for a period not to exceed 48 hours, excluding Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays, to allow ICE to assume custody.
According to the LASD, prior to the new detainer form being revised there was no standardized means by which an individual would be advised of the federal detainer hold. ICE has requested that LEA's implement the use of the new form. This includes providing a copy of the form to the subject of the detainer and a notice advising him or her that ICE intends to assume custody upon their release from local authorities.
The notice informs these individuals that ICE has requested the LEA to maintain custody beyond the time when they would have been released by the state or local law enforcement authorities based on their criminal charges or convictions. The notice contains translations into Spanish, French, Portuguese, Chinese, and Vietnamese.
The new measures include a new detainer form and the launch of a toll-free hotline – (855) 448-6903 – that detained individuals can call if they believe they may be U.S. citizens or victims of a crime. The hotline will be staffed 24 hours a day, seven days a week by ICE personnel at the Law Enforcement Support Center.