MILWAUKEE, Wis. (WTAQ) - Wisconsin’s largest county is being asked to investigate a link between the sheriff’s department and the federal agency that handles illegal immigrants.
Christine Neumann-Ortiz, who heads an immigrant advocacy group, says dozens arrested by Milwaukee County deputies for traffic cases and minor crimes faced deportation in the last year – even if they were found not guilty. She says her group, Voces de la Frontera, is also concerned that more immigrants are being improperly victimized for labor rights violations and racial profiling.
The County Board’s Judiciary Committee will take up the request for an investigation on Thursday. Carl Rusnok of the Immigrations and Customs Enforcement agency says more immigrants have been deported in recent years because it’s more efficient to make arrests – there’s been more publicity about them – and law enforcement has more information about its criminal alien program.
Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke says his officers only enforce the law, and do not make subjective decisions. And he shares the same things with immigration officials that he does with the news media – including the names of those booked into the jail. Clarke says it’s wrong not to let other enforcement agencies have information that’s public.