U.S. authorities twice tried to deport a black man who was fatally shot by police in a San Diego suburb this week but his native Uganda refused to take him, reports the Associated Press. Last year, he stopped reporting to immigration authorities as required under terms of his freedom and it’s unclear whether the government made any attempt to find him.
An explanation for why Alfred Olango remained in the U.S. lies in a 2001 U.S. Supreme Court ruling that generally prohibits the detention of foreign nationals for more than six months if deportation is unlikely. The court said in the 5-4 decision that holding people indefinitely only because no country will take them violates the constitutional right to due process. Some of the thousands of immigrants who have been released after being ordered deported went on to commit crimes, making the Zadvydas vs. Davis decision a lightning rod for critics who say it illustrates a broken system. Olango, who arrived in the U.S. as a refugee in 1991, was among those who committed crimes.