A shooter who killed his three daughters and another man in a church Northern California was in the U.S. illegally and had not been turned over to Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) after a previous arrest under California’s “Sanctuary State” law, which restricts cooperation with federal immigration enforcement, authorities said on Friday .
The Sacramento County Sheriff’s Office said David Fidel Mora-Rojas was in the country illegally and was arrested Feb. 23 for driving under the influence and assaulting an officer and medical personnel.
ICE issued a detainee — a request that the suspect be held until authorities can take him into custody and include him in a deportation process. However, due to California’s “Sanctuary State” law, authorities said they were barred from detaining him or communicating with ICE about his release, and he went on bail on $15,000 bail.
Authorities said this week Mora shot and killed his daughters, 9, 10 and 13, and an adult companion who was supervising the visit to the Sacramento church before turning the gun on himself. He had been free for five days.
Mora had been living in the church in a mental institution since April last year, where he threatened to harm himself and his wife. He was also barred from owning a gun under a restraining order, but was armed with an unregistered, home-made semi-automatic.
ICE did not respond to Fox News Digital’s request, but the agency did tell The Associated Press that Mora, a Mexican citizen, had overstayed his visa and was therefore in the country illegally. He came to the United States legally in 2018.
The case will likely lead to another review of “sanctuary” laws that have sprung up in cities and states across the country. Defenders of laws restricting cooperation with immigration authorities claim that they encourage otherwise law-abiding illegal immigrants to cooperate with law enforcement. Critics of the laws question whether these benefits outweigh the risk and consequences of releasing illegal immigrant criminals who might otherwise be thrown onto the streets.
“This unspeakable tragedy demonstrates the true cost, unintentional or not, of safeguards policies that prevent law enforcement from protecting their citizens,” Sheriff Scott Jones said in a statement. Jones is running for Congress as a Republican.
The Biden administration has significantly narrowed ICE’s arrest and deportation priorities to just three categories: recent border crossings, national security threats, and “fellow criminals.”
An ICE spokesman recently confirmed to Fox News that it issues detainees to immigrants it suspects are “removable noncitizens” — those who fit into those three categories. This would indicate that the agency felt Mora fit into those priorities.
https://nypost.com/2022/03/06/california-church-shooter-david-mora-rojas-was-in-us-illegally/ California church gunman David Mora-Rojas was in the US illegally