In a tragic case of sexual abuse -- wherein an eleven-year-old girl was allegedly raped repeatedly -- two men suspected of the crime were confirmed to be in police custody on Wednesday.
The shocking case only became more tragic by the fact the culprits -- Mauricio Barrera-Navidad, 29, and Carlos Palacios-Amaya, 28 -- were illegal immigrants. Palacios-Amaya had been deported previously in 2014, with Barrera-Navidad having a final order of removal over his head since 2016.
The information that both men were illegal aliens who had been previously removed from the country or had removal orders against them brought many to speculate what would have happened/what could have been avoided had local authorities cooperated with federal officials on immigration enforcement.
Montgomery County has long opposed working with federal agencies, best exemplified by The Promoting Community Trust Executive Order. The controversial directive prevents local authorities from asking about immigration status or cooperating with federal authorities in most instances.
Despite this trend, it seems the county's Executive, Marc Elrich, has come around in this specific case.
In a statement by Elrich, he confirmed that authorities would indeed notify ICE if the two men became eligible for release. “This alleged crime is horrible, and I am confident that justice will be served in this case,” Elrich said.
But, according to WTOP; "the suspects will remain in custody in Montgomery County as the local legal process progresses."