U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement announced Friday that the agency will be using a new form to issue “detainers” when asking local law enforcement to hold individuals past their scheduled release dates. The new form and policy will take effect this coming Sunday, April 2.
Currently, ICE can issue a detainer when someone is held in local custody on suspicion of a crime. The detainer is a request to the local agency to detain that person for up to 48 hours after the person’s scheduled release date, in order for ICE to investigate whether the person is undocumented. A detainer is not a court-ordered criminal warrant.
Current policy also implicitly requires law enforcement to detain immigrants only who had “a prior felony conviction,” “three or more prior misdemeanor convictions,” “been convicted of illegal entry” or other misdemeanors that include violent sex crimes.
The new form eliminates those guidelines for detention, and allows detention of anyone whom law enforcement thinks is has “probable cause” to believe “is a removable alien.”
In other words, anyone believed to be an undocumented immigrant could be held an additional 48 hours without due process.
But not in Dane County.
“Without a warrant issued by a judge we do not honor the 48-hour holds requested by ICE,” Dane County Sheriff Dave Mahoney wrote in an email to Madison365.
Mahoney said the number of detainers requested varies from year to year.