Make this page my home page
  1. Drag the home icon in this panel and drop it onto the "house icon" in the tool bar for the browser

  2. Select "Yes" from the popup window and you're done!

Home  >  Topics  >  Border Patrol

June 12, 2011
Print Comment RSS

Police react to new Ala. immigration law

New statute will provide more muscle for officers, but complete impact remains to be seen

WHNT News 19

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. — Starting in September, all law enforcement agencies in the state of Alabama will be required to check the citizenship status of anyone who is suspected of being an illegal immigrant. People who cannot verify their citizenship through legal documentation will be immediately arrested, but only if they were stopped for another reason such as a traffic violation or being caught in the middle of a criminal act.

Law enforcement officials who spoke with WHNT News 19 on Thursday voiced support for the new law, but said it would not entirely solve Alabama's illegal immigration problem.

"I really don't know what the single biggest change will be," said Madison police spokesman Lt. John Stringer. "As these laws come down, police officers will receive training on this so that they are acting accordingly and within the confines of the law...Any time we get someone who may be a violent offender and who is here in the country illegally, we want to make sure we identify that person and make sure they're referred to the proper authorities."

Officers said recent tragedies in north Alabama have highlighted the need for immigration reform. In just the last few years, one illegal immigrant shot and killed a Huntsville police officer, while another ran a red light at Airport Road, causing a wreck that left two teenagers dead.

Madison County Sheriff Blake Dorning also voiced support for the law, but emphasized that only federal authorities can actually deport people. Sheriff Dorning said immigration agents often decline to take custody of his prisoners, leaving his department no choice but to release people who are confirmed to be in the country illegally.

Read more here.

PoliceOne Offers

P1 on Facebook

Connect with PoliceOne

Mobile Apps Facebook Twitter Google

Get the #1 Police eNewsletter

Police Newsletter Sign up for our FREE email roundup of the top news, tips columns, videos and more, sent 3 times weekly
See Sample