Since you ask, John Hogan, you are missing a lot (“Why is cooperation with ICE an issue?” column in the Nov. 17 edition of the Daily Journal). You say that some undocumented immigrants should be turned over to ICE (immigration) when they are eligible to be released from jail on the grounds that they committed a crime.

Four things you missed: 1). In our justice system, people aren’t locked up forever in county jail — everyone is released, unless they are sent to state prison. It is up to the judge and the jury (not to the jailer) to decide when they will be released. At that point they go home to their job and family. People shouldn’t be treated differently based on where they are born. 2). Most Bay Area counties have stopped this practice — they do not turn people who have completed their sentences over to immigration. Santa Clara, Napa, San Francisco, Sonoma, Marin didn’t turn anyone over last year for example. Nor does LA. 3). You assume that they are all hardened criminals. But we have rehab programs for those incarcerated – our country believes that we are not defined by the worst thing we have ever done, we can change. 4). You assume they are all dangerous felons. In fact, last year people were turned over after being arrested for violating parole, having a forged drivers license, lying to a cop. These are not violent offenses. They are not deportable offenses. Nor are they capital offenses — and it can be a death sentence to be sent back to their violent home country.

Nancy Goodban

Redwood City

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(6) comments


It is a violation our immigration laws for a person to enter our country illegally. Every country in the world protects it's boarders from illegal immigration. Also such persons should remain in custody if they are accused of committing a crime just as any citizen would be. The sub-text of illegal immigration is that Democrats want to import likely Democrat voters. On this point I think they'll discover they're wrong. Hispanics have values more akin to Republicans than Democrats like strong family values, a work ethic, etc.


Poor Nancy, I wish you had done your homework. [sad]

Ray Fowler

Good morning, Nancy

Thanks for your LTE. I don't always agree with John, but he raises some important points that the activists' agenda fails to address.

Re: transfers to ICE, Sheriff Bolanos believes everyone's voice should be heard. No disagreement, but are we listening to persons victimized by offenders released back to the community? Are we listening to the larger community? I'm guessing there are more folks who would like to see offenders with a serious criminal history, who entered the community without permission, remanded to the agency responsible for processing those same offenders.

You live in Redwood City. What would happen if one of your neighbors entered a foreign country without permission then committed a crime in that country? Would they be allowed to avoid being transferred to the legal authority designated to decide whether they should face prosecution or deportation? It's more likely they would be cooling their heels in custody for a long time. Maybe not. However, it's a pretty safe bet there would be no local protesters clamoring for your neighbor's release.

Do you really feel Sheriff Bolanos' decision to halt transfers to ICE makes our community safer?


"violating parole..." good enough reason.

Terence Y

Ms. Goodban – you seem to conveniently forget the number 1 reason that trumps the four things you list. These folks are in the country illegally. However, maybe you can set an example for the rest of us, say for the next six months, by inviting all these newly released folks to your home (or your extended families homes) for a hot meal and lodging. We can already search for violent crimes (even death sentences) committed against law abiding Americans by these folks but perhaps you can give readers a Yelp review on your 6-month experience. Maybe they’re just as you describe in the four things you believe Mr. Horgan missed. I’m betting they’re not.

Dirk van Ulden

Dear Nancy - I believe you are missing a lot. These criminals were already illegally here. Then they committed a crime or crimes that warranted jail time. Why do you think they are entitled to returning to their families as if they have legal status? And contrary to your statement, many of these are hardened criminals with severe rap sheets including domestic violence, assaults and other unmentionable crimes. Why would we want those characters in our midst? Let the countries from whence they came deal with them; we have enough home-grown criminals here already. I sincerely hope that the Sheriff will reverse his decision.

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