The Trump administration’s harsh immigration policies affected yet another DREAMer. On Sunday, March 26, Francisco Rodriguez-Dominguez was taken into custody by Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials at his home in Portland, Oregon.
He was released on bond the next day from Northwest Detention Center in Tacoma, Washington, after his community rallied for him.
glad to be back home,” Dominguez told CNN. “It feels good to be surrounded by
family and friends.” ICE officials arrived at the DREAMer’s home without a
warrant and aggressively banged the door. “It was nerve-wracking,” he said.
Before opening the door, Dominguez called his priest, Father Roberto Maldonado of Holy Cross-Santa Cruz Episcopal Church, where he’s an active member and volunteer.
“I was trying to calm him down,” Maldonado said. “I could tell that he was afraid.” The priest says he told the DREAMer to make sure ICE had a warrant but Dominguez doesn’t remember hearing that.
“When I was on the phone with him, the banging on the door got louder so I just decided to walk out,” the 25-year-old said. ICE officials immediately handcuffed him and took him away.
“[I] didn’t even get to
say 'bye or anything,” Elizabeth Rodriguez, his sister, told Fusion.
The DREAMer arrived to the US from Michoacán, Mexico at the age of five.
In 2013, he became part of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, which allows young immigrants to study, work, and travel in the US without fear of deportation.
ICE released a statement on Monday, according to CNN, which said Dominguez was “targeted for arrested based upon his guilty plea in December to a charge of driving under the influence of intoxicants, an offense ICE deems a threat to public safety.”
But this claim was questioned by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Oregon. Mat dos Santos, legal director of the organization, said:
“A judge had already determined that he wasn’t a danger to the community or a flight risk. So, why is ICE showing up at his house early on Sunday morning? These kind of brutal tactics do not keep us safe. It just makes people scared to live their lives and pushes immigrant communities further into the shadows.”
After Dominguez was charged with a DUI in December 2016, he entered a diversion program.
By doing so, he would be allowed to remain a DREAMer after completing the program. He completed almost all of the requirements and went to his court dates as well as his meetings, according to Dominguez’s attorneys.
The Mexican native is known throughout his local community for working for the Latino Network, which organizes a food pantry service for low-income families. He also coaches an elementary school soccer team.
Matt dos Santos, legal director at the ACLU of Oregon, said in a statement:
“We are thankful to everyone who called to ask ICE to release Francisco. The phone lines were jammed all day yesterday and today. Yet again, people have shown that they reject the cruel policies of the Trump administration.”