Twenty-two of Iowa’s 99 county sheriffs are no longer complying with requests from Immigrants and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to hold people suspected of being illegal immigrants unless they have a judge’s approval, according to the Iowa ACLU. 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 ACLU 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 ACLU 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.