Immigration Violations - Policy 412
412.1 Purpose & Scope
- The purpose of this policy is to provide guidelines to members of the Forest Grove Police Department for investigating and enforcing immigration laws.
- It is the policy of the Forest Grove Police Department that all members make personal and professional commitments to equal enforcement of the law and equal service to the public. Confidence in this commitment will increase the effectiveness of this department in protecting and serving the entire community and recognizing the dignity of all persons, regardless of their immigration status.
412.3 Victims & Witnesses
- To encourage crime reporting and cooperation in the investigation of criminal activity, all individuals, regardless of their immigration status, must feel secure that contacting or being addressed by members of law enforcement will not automatically lead to immigration inquiry and/or deportation. While it may be necessary to determine the identity of a victim or witness, members shall treat all individuals equally and without regard to race, color or national origin in any way that would violate the United States or Oregon Constitutions.
- The U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has primary jurisdiction for enforcement of the provisions of Title 8 of the United States Code dealing with illegal entry. This department does not participate in routine immigration investigation and enforcement activities. However, an officer may arrest any person who is the subject of an arrest warrant issued by a federal magistrate for a criminal violation of federal immigration laws (ORS 181A.820).
412.4.1 Basis for Contact
- Unless immigration status is relevant to another criminal offense or investigation (e.g., harboring, smuggling, terrorism), the fact that an individual is suspected of an immigration violation shall not be the sole basis for contact, detention or arrest (ORS 181A.820).
412.5 Arrest Notification to Immigration & Customs Enforcement
- Generally, an officer will not need to notify ICE when booking arrestees at the county jail. Immigration officials routinely interview suspected undocumented aliens who are booked into the county jail on criminal charges. Notification will be handled according to jail operation procedures. No individual who is otherwise ready to be released should continue to be detained solely for the purpose of notification.
412.6 ICE Request for Assistance
- Requests by ICE, or any other federal agency, for assistance from this department should be directed to a supervisor. The Department may provide available support services, such as traffic control or peacekeeping efforts, to ICE or other federal agencies.
412.7 Information Sharing
- No member of this department will prohibit, or in any way restrict, any other member from doing any of the following regarding the citizenship or immigration status, lawful or unlawful, of any individual (8 USC Section 1373):
- Sending information to, or requesting or receiving such information from ICE
- Maintaining such information in department records
- Exchanging such information with any other federal, state or local government entity
412.7.1 Immigration Holds
- No individual should be held based solely on a federal immigration detainer under 8 CFR 287.7 unless the person has been charged with a federal crime or the detainer is accompanied by a warrant, affidavit of probable cause, or removal order. Notification to the federal authority issuing the detainer should be made prior to the release.
412.7.2 Non-Disclosure of Certain Information
- Except as required by state or federal law, members should not disclose for the purpose of enforcement of federal immigration laws the following information about a person or his/her known relatives or associates, whether current or otherwise (2017 Oregon Laws, c. 724 Section 1):
- The person's address
- The person's workplace or hours of work
- The person's school or school hours
- The person's contact information, including telephone number, email address or social media account information
- The identity of known associates or relatives of the person
- The date, time or location of a person's hearings, proceedings or appointments with the Department that are not matters of public record
412.8 U Visa & T Visa Non-Immigrant Status
- Under certain circumstances, federal law allows temporary immigration benefits, known as a U visa, to victims and witnesses of certain qualifying crimes (8 USC Section 1101(a)(15)(U)). A law enforcement certification for a U visa may be completed by an officer in order for a U visa to be issued.
- Similar immigration protection, known as a T visa, is available for certain qualifying victims of human trafficking (8 USC Section 1101(a)(15)(T)). A law enforcement declaration for a T visa may be completed by an officer in order for a T visa to be issued.
- Any request for assistance in applying for U visa or T visa status should be forwarded in a timely manner to the Investigation Division supervisor assigned to oversee the handling of any related case. The Investigation Division supervisor should:
- Consult with the assigned investigator to determine the current status of any related case and whether further documentation is warranted.
- Contact the appropriate prosecutor assigned to the case, if applicable, to ensure the certification or declaration has not already been completed and whether a certification or declaration is warranted.
- Address the request and complete the certification or declaration, if appropriate, in a timely manner.
- The instructions for completing certification and declaration forms can be found on the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) website.
- Ensure that any decision to complete, or not complete, a certification or declaration form is documented in the case file and forwarded to the appropriate prosecutor. Include a copy of any completed form in the case file.