Immigration Bill Focusing On Sheriffs Gets Legislative OK

Aug 20, 2019

File photo of a Immigration and Customs Enforcement agent.
Credit Immigration and Customs Enforcement

North Carolina Republicans have given final legislative approval to a bill requiring all sheriffs to comply with requests by federal immigration agents to jail inmates they believe are in the country unlawfully.

The House voted 62-53 on Tuesday to accept Senate changes to the measure, which responds to a handful of dissenting sheriffs refusing to cooperate with Immigration and Customs Enforcement and the detainers it issues.

The detainers aren't arrest warrants, so sheriffs can ignore them. GOP legislators point out recent cases in Mecklenburg County, where violent suspects who were subjects of detainers were released.

The measure now goes to Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper, who has sounded willing to veto the bill. He said earlier Tuesday there are already laws to put in jail dangerous people regardless of immigration status.