21 Days to Exile – Tracking one Detroit woman’s deportation
Bill Kubota, Detroit Public Television’s One Detroit
Sunday in Detroit, June, 2017.
Metropolitan Detroit is home to more Chaldeans than anywhere else in the US.
Now they join the Arab and Latino communities now targeted by the Trump Administration, which has ordered ICE arrest and deport more immigrants whose resident status is questionable and have criminal records.
Deportations are up nearly 40 percent since Trump took office, according to ICE.
One of the deported is Maria Garcia Juarez, age 23, of Southwest Detroit.
Juarez came to California from Mexico at eight months old, undocumented. Now she’s married to a Detroiter, a US citizen, and mother of a toddler, also a US citizen. She has sisters and a brother who are US citizens. But it’s her criminal record as a minor that attracted the attention of ICE, long before Trump was elected.
Juarez grew up in a Salinas, California neighborhood where gangs and crime are a way of life.
She was caught stealing a couple of cars and leading police on a high speed chase, were serious, she was a juvenile and served time for her crimes. Since then she’s been able to escape that environment and make a new, upstanding life for herself in Michigan.
With the deportation looming, Juarez says she has not seen her or talked to her parents for years and knows nothing about Mexico, where she’ll be sent. She was a baby the last time she was there.
Behind the story:
McCartney and his team would use that time to find out how deportation works and the legal options deportees face.