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Judge Rules For Marion County Man Detained On Immigration Charge


A U.S. District Judge has ruled in favor of a man who was detained by the Marion County Sheriff’s Office under the request of the federal Department of Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

Judge Sarah Evans Barker ruled in favor of Antonio Lopez-Aguilar and the Indiana chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union last week.

Judge Barker’s decision upholds a prior settlement reached between the ACLU and the city of Indianapolis, which stated that the Marion County Sheriff’s Department would not hold people in detention without a warrant or probable cause.

Lopez-Aguilar was reportedly detained in court by the Sheriff’s Department in September of 2014, after the Sheriff’s Department received an ‘unofficial’ request from Immigration and Customs Enforcement to hold him in custody. Lopez-Aguilar was in court on the misdemeanor offence of driving without a license.

Lopez-Aguilar’s case was taken up by the Indiana ACLU who argued his Fourth Amendment rights— those prohibiting searches and seizures without probable cause— were violated.

In July of this year, a court ruled in favor of Lopez-Aguilar and issued an injunction, prohibiting the Marion County’s Sheriff’s Department from detaining people on ICE’s recommendations without a warrant.

The federal government intervened in the injunction. Barker’s decision last week issued a final verdict on the case upholding the injunction.

In her decision Barker wrote, “The full extent of federal permission extended to the states to cooperate in federal immigration enforcement… does notpermit a state to require its law enforcement officers to comply with removal orders, standing alone, or ICE detainers, standing alone.”

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