Forsyth County Sheriff's Office
Immigration and Customs Enforcement has given the INDY
an explanation for why an undocumented immigrant with no deportation order or outstanding criminal charges or warrants in Durham was detained at Duke Manor apartments Tuesday morning: he was there.
ICE spokesman Bryan Cox confirmed Wednesday that Edwin Leonel Reyes-Guillen was taken into custody Tuesday by the U.S. Marshals Joint Fugitive Task Force, of which ICE is a member. It was Reyes-Guillen's first encounter with ICE, Cox said.
Here's the full statement provided by Cox (emphasis and link added):
“The U.S. Marshals Joint Fugitive Task Force, of which ICE is a member, was seeking an international fugitive wanted for murder March 28 at the location where they encountered unlawfully present Honduran national Edwin Reyes-Guillen. ICE deportation officers took Mr. Reyes into custody following a brief struggle after he actively attempted to resist arrest.
As [Department of Homeland Security] Secretary [John] Kelly has stated, ICE will no longer exempt classes or categories of removable aliens from potential enforcement. All of those in violation of immigration laws may be subject to immigration arrest, detention, and if found removable by final order, removal from the United States. Further, anyone giving credence to the idea that an ICE officer’s commands can be ignored or fought during an encounter is endangering public safety and the very people they claim to support and represent.”
(Secretary Kelly has drafted what The Los Angeles Times referred to as “aggressive guidelines” to carry out President Trump’s executive orders related to immigration
ICE’s statement today aligns with advocacy group Alerta Migratoria NC's statement this morning
that officers had taken the wrong man into custody when they detained Reyes-Guillen. The group posted a video of Reyes-Guillen's detention on Facebook.
Ivan Almonte of Alerta Migratoria said family members told the group that when Reyes-Guillen was first approached by law enforcement, wearing vests labeled "Police" and "U.S. Marshal," they showed him a photo of a different man they were after. Almonte said they asked Reyes-Guillen if he had ever been detained by ICE and told him he would be arrested. He then ran away from the officers. He later came back to the apartment complex, where he lives, and the officers were still there.
Asked if the targeted fugitive had been apprehended, Cox referred the INDY
to the U.S. Marshals. He said could say "definitively that the fugitive and this individual taken into ICE custody were at the same location prior to the attempt to flee."
According to Cox, Reyes-Guillen has been placed into removal proceedings. He is being held at the Forsyth County Detention Facility.
According to Almonte, Reyes-Guillen does not have a criminal background. The Department of Public Safety does not show any conviction records any individual with that name. Durham Police Department spokesman Wil Glenn confirmed that Reyes-Guillen has no arrest history with that agency.
"Edwin was violently thrown on the ground causing injury to Edwin’s head," Alerta Migratoria posted on Facebook this morning, along with the video of Reyes-Guillen being taken into custody. "Witnesses report seeing blood and law enforcement authorities stomping on Edwin’s head. All this happened in front of children who were waiting for their school bus to Forest View Elementary. Children arrived at school in a complete state of panic and worried about returning to empty homes."
In the video, an officer can be heard telling the woman filming, "He just did what he did. We didn't do that, he did that," while Reyes-Guillen is on the ground. An officer tries to get the woman to go inside an apartment and close the door, saying, "There are kids who do not need to be seeing this."
Officers can be heard saying, in Spanish, "Do you want problems with immigration?" and "Shut up."