ACLU: ICE releases Portland 'dreamer' after public outcry

Francisco J. Rodriguez Dominguez, 25, released on bond, ACLU says

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) --- The American Civil Liberties Union of Oregon says a 25-year-old 'dreamer' was released from ICE custody on Monday following a strong show of support from the community.

In a press release, the ACLU said ICE decided to release Francisco J. Rodriguez Dominguez on bond "following a public outcry over his detention."

ACLU: Portland 'dreamer' released from ICE detention

"We are thankful to everyone who called to ask ICE to release Francisco," ACLU of Oregon legal director Mat dos Santos wrote. "Yet again, people have shown that they reject the cruel policies of the Trump administration."

KOIN 6 News was there when Rodriguez Dominguez arrived home Monday night.

"It feels good to know that I have everyone here with me right now," he said. "It's a warm, heart-warming feeling just to know that I have everyone here close by and that we're ready to take it step-by-step."

Rodriguez Dominguez said he wanted to thank everyone who supported him.

"I had a lot of people make phone calls, a lot of people that showed up to that rally, at the time I didn't know what was going on, but I'm glad that everyone worked [out]," he told KOIN 6 News. "I just want to thank everyone that was there."



ICE agents arrested the 25-year-old at his Southeast Portland home early Sunday morning. According to the ACLU, ICE didn't have a warrant for his arrest.

In a statement released Monday, ICE spokesman Rose Richeson said Rodriguez Dominguez was arrested because he pleaded guilty to a DUI charge in December.

But the ACLU said Rodriguez Dominguez completed a diversion program for the misdemeanor DUI and satisfied all of his court dates and meetings. He was vetted by the criminal court system and subsequently released back into the community.

Still, ICE claims the 25-year-old remains a threat.

"Deportation officers with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) took Mr. Rodriguez into custody March 26. He was targeted for arrest 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. Mr. Rodriguez was transferred to the Northwest Detention Center and will subsequently be released on bond today pending the outcome of removal proceedings before an immigration judge with the Department of Justice’s Executive Office for Immigration Review."  - Rose Richeson

People gathered to support Rodriguez Dominguez at a rally Monday.

At the event "Call to Action! Immediate Response to ICE", those who know Rodriguez Dominguez described him as a man who cares about helping his community.



"His friends and his church came and stood up for him," Kim Wagner said. "These are people that know him, that know he's a soccer coach, that he works at a food pantry. He's here to work and to contribute to our community and make it a better place."

Rodriguez Dominguez has lived in the Portland metro area since he arrived from Morelia Michoacan, Mexico as a child. The ACLU said he has been a part of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program since 2013.

Mayor Ted Wheeler released a statement about Rodriguez Dominguez's arrest and in response to Attorney General Jeff Sessions' comments on sanctuary cities.

“Today, Attorney General Jeff Sessions again reiterated the Trump administration’s threat to withhold funding from sanctuary cities. His comments provide barely more information than the already broad statements provided by the president himself. It is unclear whether the AG is referring to future grants, or to funds already provided. Also unclear is his legal ability to withhold funds DOJ funds from states under these conditions. It should be noted that DOJ grants to the City of Portland in our 2015-16 budget totaled just more than $3 million.All of this is happening in an environment that contains a lot of heated rhetoric but not a lot of facts. For example, just last week an Oregon Republican Party spokesman said that Portland’s status as a sanctuary city means we are harboring, “criminal illegal aliens who are murdering and raping.” This statement is inaccurate and harmful.An ICE arrest in Portland over the weekend demonstrates how wrongheaded this statement truly is. This weekend, ICE arrested Francisco J. Rodriguez Dominguez, a 25-year-old who has lived in the United States since he was five. Far from being a violent criminal, Francisco is a respected member of the community, a student and a volunteer. This arrest does nothing to promote public safety. Instead, actions like this only serve to tear apart our community and needlessly alter the lives of our residents. The city had no role in this arrest and I am against it.Today my administration spoke with both ICE and DOJ about our concern that their actions tremendous damage they are doing to the social, civic, and economic life of our city. The City of Portland, our police bureau, and our employees do not cooperate with ICE. However, ICE has the power to operate within our city, and does not have to inform us of their activities. To learn more about your rights regarding ICE and immigration enforcement, please visit Oregon Immigration Resource here.”

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