Sofia Ramirez holds up a sign reading “Free Victor” during a protest to demand the release of Victor Avendano-Ramirez outside of the Hays County Sheriff’s Office in San Marcos, Texas, on Wednesday, Jan. 31, 2018.
Photo: Nick Wagner/Austin American-Statesman
Photo: Nick Wagner/Austin American-Statesman

Deportations of traffic offenders skyrocketed under Trump, study says

In pushing for increased coordination between federal immigration agencies and local law enforcement, the Trump administration has contended that those types of partnerships are key to ridding the country of unauthorized immigrants who are also violent criminals.

But in President Donald Trump’s first year in office, the largest increase in deportations through the most prominent of those partnerships, the Secure Communities program, was not of murderers or rapists, but of immigrants who allegedly committed traffic violations, according to new federal data analyzed by Syracuse University’s Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse.

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The number of deportations for traffic violators increased 138 percent from 2016 to 2017, the data shows. The next-highest percentage increases were of people accused of public order crimes, disorderly conduct, failure to appear in court and licensing violations.

The trend in the data on Secure Communities has special significance for Texas in light of the debate over Senate Bill 4, the state law enacted last year that aims to ban so-called sanctuary cities and counties that decline to assist federal immigration enforcement.

Read more on the study and what it means on 

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