Twenty-two of Iowa’s 99 county sheriffs are no longer complying with requests from Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to hold people suspected of being illegal immigrants unless they have a judge’s approval, according to the Iowa A-C-L-U. ICE issues what’s called a “detainer” which asks the counties to hold the individuals for 48 hours while ICE determines if they will pursue immigration proceedings. Iowa A-C-L-U spokesperson, Erica Johnson, says ICE detainer requests are often unconstitutional.
“The ICE detainer requests in and of themselves, if they’re not accompanied by any sort of warrant signed by a judge, don’t necessary give local law enforcement any reason to detain an individual,” Johnson says. Johnson says it’s up to local law enforcement whether they want to corporate with ICE.
“It’s really-like I said, it’s a good showing to the community as saying, ‘Hey, we want to work with you.’ Especially those vulnerable communities, especially immigrants,” Johnson says. The counties which have told the A-C-L-U they won’t comply with the detainer requests are: Allamakee, Benton, Cass, Clinton, Dubuque, Franklin, Fremont, Ida, Iowa, Greene, Jefferson, Johnson, Linn, Marion, Monona, Montgomery, Polk, Pottawattamie, Sioux, Story, Wapello, and Winneshiek.