Yet Another Calif. Town Votes to Support Federal Lawsuit Against State's Sanctuary Law

Nick Kangadis | April 12, 2018
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Another day, another California town adding their name to the list of cities fighting back against the “sanctuary state law.”

The Westminster City Council voted 3 to 1 to challenge the law, otherwise known as SB-54.

The move by the city of Westminster follows the Department of Justice (DOJ) lawsuit against the state of California for implementing SB-54, essentially making California a sanctuary state.

The cities that previously joined Westminster in their objection to the law — primarily residing in Orange County, Calif. — include Newport Beach, Orange, Los Alamitos, Huntington Beach, Mission Viejo, Aliso Viejo, Fountain Valley, San Juan Capistrano and Yorba Linda, according to the ABC 7 - Los Angeles.

The Escondido City Council, near San Diego, voted 4 to 1 in favor of supporting the federal lawsuit against the state last week.

SB-54 limits the law enforcement agencies from using any resources to keep a criminal who is also an illegal immigrant, especially if the person was brought in for something other than immigration reasons.

SB-54 states:

Existing law provides that when there is reason to believe that a person arrested for a violation of specified controlled substance provisions may not be a citizen of the United States, the arresting agency shall notify the appropriate agency of the United States having charge of deportation matters.

This bill would repeal those provisions.

Existing law provides that whenever an individual who is a victim of or witness to a hate crime, or who otherwise can give evidence in a hate crime investigation, is not charged with or convicted of committing any crime under state law, a peace officer may not detain the individual exclusively for any actual or suspected immigration violation or report or turn the individual over to federal immigration authorities.

This bill would, among other things and subject to exceptions, prohibit state and local law enforcement agencies, including school police and security departments, from using money or personnel to investigate, interrogate, detain, detect, or arrest persons for immigration enforcement purposes, as specified, and would, subject to exceptions, proscribe other activities or conduct in connection with immigration enforcement by law enforcement agencies.

“Our primary beef with it is it limits the amount of communication our law enforcement can have with federal law enforcement,” Orange City Councilman Fred Whitaker said.

The lawsuit by the Trump administration against the state of California is ongoing.