The federal immigration training program Harris County Sheriff Tommy Thomas wants for a dozen jailers in Houston has been successful in identifying illegal immigrants in Arizona and Oklahoma, said officials in those places quoted by the Houston Chronicle. Harris County would join 34 departments from Florida to California that have undergone the training. The training would give employees the ability to interview inmates more thoroughly about their immigration status and authorize them to detain those in the country illegally.
In Phoenix, Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio said the federal ICE agency trained 100 deputies and 60 jailers. The officers are not only checking immigration status of jail inmates, but assisting in ICE criminal investigations, the sheriff said. ”Since the cops won’t ask where they’re from, we ask,” said Arpaio, referring to local police who don’t check the immigration status of those they arrest. ”We check everybody who comes in, about 300 or 400 a day, and we have determined over 8,000 illegals have been booked into our jail. It’s been successful.” Capt. Tom Huckeby of the Tulsa County, OK, Sheriff’s Department said 30 jail detention officers trained by ICE have filed 1,200 immigration detainers since last September. A detainer allows law enforcement to keep immigrants detained until they are turned over to ICE. ”It’s definitely making a difference,” Huckeby said.