ICE raid leaves community in fear
MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - An raid by Immigration Customs Enforcement (ICE) left many people in Memphis on edge.
As word spread of the weekend raid, many activists groups started speaking up to help those families who are now afraid they could be next.
ICE is not releasing how many people the agency detained during the raid, but agents did say the operation was targeting adults who had entered the country illegally as children. Additionally, it targeted those 16 years and older who have criminal histories or gang ties.
Mauricio Calvo, with Latino Memphis, said the explanation being given by ICE for the raids is not matching up with what the families are telling him.
"They're specifically targeting the Latino community. They are going to apartment complexes where they know Latino people live and honestly it's dehumanizing," Calvo said.
ICE released a statement saying the priority was to arrest and remove those who posed a safety threat.
"ICE prioritizes the arrest and removal of national security and public safety threats. However, no class or category of alien in the United States is exempt from arrest or removal."
According to one activist, Memphis families watched Sunday as ICE arrested people who were not security threats.
Activist Joe Salazar said if ICE came out looking for one person, but found six or seven others who were undocumented, then those people were picked up too.
He said despite the community being afraid, Salazar reminds them that there is help for them.
Latino Memphis representatives said they are providing legal resources to some of the families that have contacted them and usually these individuals are taken to a detention center in Mason, Tennessee, before continuing the deportation process.
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