'Sanctuary Cities' Could Be Sued by Crime Victims If GOP Bill Passes

June 15, 2018

So-called sanctuary jurisdictions that decline to cooperate with federal immigration enforcement could be held liable for failing to detain people in the U.S. illegally for deportation proceedings, under draft legislation proposed Thursday by House Republican leaders.

Under the bill, if local law enforcement officials do not comply with an Immigration and Customs Enforcement request to hold an immigrant who is in the country illegally, and that immigrant is released and later commits rape, murder or sexual assault of a minor, the victim or the victim’s family would be allowed to sue the jurisdiction, according to a draft of the bill released Thursday.

President Trump frequently railed about violent crimes committed by people in the country illegally during the 2016 campaign, most notably the case of Kathryn Steinle, a San Francisco woman killed two years ago by a Mexican man who had been deported several times.

A federal judge in California ruled that Stienle’s parents could not sue San Francisco for failing to hold the man at an immigration official’s request.

 
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