FREE PASCALE!!!

Well, I planned to take a few days off from bloggery, but sometimes events warrant an immediate response. If you haven’t heard, Yubanet founder and reporter Pascale Fusshoeller was arrested Tuesday afternoon for a traffic violation which led to her arrest as an illegal immigrant. I’ve known and worked along side Pascale for fifteen years. It’s a thankless job out there in the trenches of local politics. Only the hardiest have the stomach for it. Pascale has always been a trooper, and a vocal defender of democracy and transparency in government. What started as a website that alerted local residents to approaching wildfires has turned into a major news source for those of  us here in the hills. If anybody deserves to live and work in these United States, Pascale is at the top of my list.

Immigration authorities have already moved in (where’s the govt. shutdown when you really need it?) and are moving to deport her, presumably to her native Luxembourg. There’s a petition to stop the feds from removing her to Yuba City, Arizona or maybe Guantanamo. I urge anyone who cares about local journalism and fairness to sign up…

http://www.thepetitionsite.com/takeaction/651/420/995/

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38 Responses to FREE PASCALE!!!

  1. Michael Anderson says:

    So, after poking around the webs a bit I have learned that immigration law changed substantially in 1997. Even if you marry a US citizen, you have no right to live here.

    “Under current law, a person who is undocumented and is married to a U.S. citizen or has parents that are citizens would have to apply for a waiver if they want to remain in the U.S. Yet, to obtain that waiver, the individual needs to prove “extreme hardship” would occur if they’re not allowed back into the country. Emotional or economic loss at times does not qualify.”
    http://www.voxxi.com/petition-bring-spouses-deportation/

    This sounds like a law that is begging to be changed. At least softened up.

  2. Michael Anderson says:

    More on the law here. I don’t see how this applies to Pascale:

    “Adjustment of Status: You may be able to apply for permanent residency (a green card) if you:
    are married to a U.S. citizen, OR
    have a U.S. citizen child over 21 years of age, OR
    have a U.S. citizen parent.
    You may be unable to get a green card if you were convicted of a crimes of moral turpitude (unless it had a possible sentence of one year or less and you were actually sentenced to six months or less), a drug crime (other than simple possession of 30 grams or less of marijuana), or two crimes where you received a sentence of 5 years or more.”

    But this section of the law seems to apply the best. I think a case can be made that Susan Levitz would suffer “exceptional and extremely unusual” hardship if this deportation goes through:

    “Cancellation of Removal: You may be eligible for cancellation of removal even if you never had a green card if:
    – you have been physically present in the U.S. for 10 years, AND
    – you have maintained good moral character during that time
    – your deportation would cause ‘exceptional and extremely unusual’ hardship to your U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident spouse, parent or child.
    Most criminal convictions bar you from this type of cancellation of removal because you cannot show good moral character.”

    http://www.miracoalition.org/en/enforcement/roknav-resources-deportation/211-deportation-defenses

  3. PeteK says:

    So she has been here for 15 years and never applied for citizenship?

    • rl crabb says:

      I can’t tell you what hoops Pascale faced in becoming an American citizen, other than what her partner, Sue Levitz has told the press. She claims that Pascale was in the process of applying for citizenship after they were recently married.
      After reading the snarky comments in today’s Sac Bee article, it’s easy to see how this is only another case of those “damn illegals” to most people. Lock ’em up…Ship ’em out. My support comes from knowing her personally, and seeing firsthand how she has conducted herself while being a guest in this country. It certainly wasn’t a case of Pascale taking a job away from an American citizen.

      • Michael Anderson says:

        Don’t forget this site: https://www.facebook.com/wesupportPascale

        Lots of great info. in there, that is not being reported in any other location.

      • Michael Anderson says:

        Bob,

        I am finding it very interesting who is taking up this campaign to help Pascale and Susan, and who is not.

        For those of us who are legally married, we totally understand the moral and legal obligations that come with that designation. With kids especially, the formulas and court-required assignations must be a part of your kit.

        Susan and Pascale are legally married. They have been together for many years, in this country and in this county. They run a business together, yubanet.com, that is a tremendous asset to our community.

        They are married now, as of June of this year, they are working on Pascale’s legality to be here after that fact. Why would anyone want to deport her at this critical time?

        Something smells. I am channeling my old friend, Bob Lickter. He had a nose for news better than anyone I ever met.

        Michael A.

  4. Greg Goodknight says:

    Had she truthfully identified herself when asked and was otherwise pleasant while unresponsive, it might have had a better outcome. Even illegals have 1st amendment rights.

    Never talk to the police, a fun lecture by a law professor:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6wXkI4t7nuc

    Lie to an officer and you make their day. Tell too much of the truth and you can also make their day.

  5. Ben Emery says:

    When it hits home it makes most of us a bit more compassionate. What is happening is showing the hypocritical nature of what the Obama administration says vs. what it does. Please call and email Senator Boxer’s office on behalf of Pascale Fusshoeller.

    The Pascale case shows how inequality screws those who try to do things the right way. Pascale and Susan legally couldn’t be married until recently so Pascale had to live as a “criminal” for years because she was born attracted to the same gender and nothing else. Equality For All Now!

    Obama administration sets deportation record

    “Among the new rules is that ICE agents should wait until an illegal immigrant has three or more misdemeanor convictions before being picked up — and traffic offenses don’t count.
    Given limited enforcement resources, three or more convictions for minor traffic misdemeanors or other relatively minor misdemeanors alone should not trigger a detainer unless the convictions reflect a clear and continuing danger to others or disregard for the law,” Mr. Morton said in the new memo.”
    http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2012/dec/21/obama-administration-sets-deportation-record/

    • Michael Anderson says:

      Ben,

      I think what is most interesting here is that Susan Levitz, a US citizen who is legally married to Pascale, is having her rights violated in a most egregious manner by a federal gov’t that is clearly off the rails. The federal gov’t has been shut down by a fascist minority of US citizens whose behavior we have tolerated for far too long. It is time to put an end to this nonsense.

      From the Bee: ” “She’s extremely scared, upset and shaken. She’s being belly-chained; they’re treating her like a common criminal. It’s degrading. ICE didn’t consider her contribution to the community or the rights of her wife, a U.S. citizen.”

      This is what happens in China, Russia, and Saudi Arabia. Belly-chained? Really? The legal wife of a US citizen?

      If this fascist minority of US citizens had not destroyed the US Congress’ ability to function the past 40 years, we would certainly have some sort of immigration reform that would have prevented this from happening. Asking the states to piecemeal immigration reform is clearly not a functional way of governance.

      Michael A.

  6. Ben Emery says:

    Fascist authoritarianism creep has been in the process since the Nixon years with the appointment of Lewis Powell.

    Susan must terrified at the moment that her wife is about to stripped from her in the light of day. As I mentioned above until it hits home does it really sink in for most.

    The beauty of my lifestyle of living in destination places such as Napa CA, Telluride CO, Oahu Hawaii, Reno/ Tahoe NV, Baja Mexico, and others. I got to work side by side with international workers from all over the world. Some legal, some illegal but all of them lived in the fear of being deported or a loved one being deported. I know the symptoms of what Susan and Pascale are going through all to well.

    I truly am worried about them and cannot imagine what is going to happen if Pascale actually gets deported. This seems like a scene from movie about fascist 30’s Germany, Italy, or Spain.

  7. steve cottrell says:

    Michael:

    By all means, let us know what happens after you channel Lickter, because this thing gets goofier by the day. Like you say, Bob will sniff things out. And thanks for posting all the info re: the federal regs.

    I keep my fingers crossed for Pascale, (and Susan), but without some kind of intervention from Boxer or Feinstein, the prospects don’t seem particularly good right now. Let’s all hope that cooler heads prevail at ICE and deportation is taken off the table.

    • Terry Pittsford says:

      Steve, I am loathe to say it but trying to get the attention of Boxer or Feinstein is a daunting (but not entirely impossible with unrelenting tenacity) task. I have made several attempts to contact both of them regarding their stance on gun control and so far the only activity has been in the form of boilerplate responses thanking me for contacting them and that my comments would most certainly be taken into consideration…blah, blah, blah. Feinstein’s letter was especially infuriating. This is a direct quote from the very first paragraph: “Thank you for contacting me to share your opposition to laws designed to prevent gun violence. [I said nothing about any opposition to gun laws.] I respect your opinion on this important issue, and I welcome the opportunity to explain my point of view. ” Apparently someone needs to point out to Ms. Feinstein that HER point of view supposedly reflects that of her constituents, but in her all too typical political arrogance instead displays an elitist attitude which most certainly does NOT represent the people of whom she is supposedly an advocate. Nonetheless I am on board with the effort to right this insufferable violation of human rights. By the way, it’s good to see you in print.

  8. Terry Pittsford says:

    I support the movement to right this intolerable injustice, but something about the online petition process is unclear. I have always understood that these pleas are all but useless, in the eyes of the government, anyway, because they bear no physical signature and therefore can’t be vetted by way of voter roles. I am somewhat familiar with internet marketing ploys and this particular petition has all the earmarks of a data mining enterprise. I have participated in a small number of these online petitions only to be later inundated with junk mail. As a sidebar, I joined the NRA a year or so ago and now received a nearly daily deluge of mail addressed to: “Ms. Terry Pittsford” or “Dear Fellow Conservative.” All of them of course are asking for a donation. My research has revealed that a majority of these solicitations are from persons or groups of dubious veracity. In any case if someone can verify that online petitions have validity when submitted to our legislators, it would be greatly appreciated.

    • Michael Anderson says:

      Terry,

      I think this one is OK. I had the same concerns, looked into it a bit, and decided that it as innocuous enough to add my name.

      But your point is well taken. We are currently being inundated with violations of our personal privacy, and hence our freedom.

      As Steve Cottrell acknowledges, Lick would have tolerated none of this nonsense.

      What I would like to know is why ICE was involved so suddenly. These are discretionary decisions made by Keith Royal, and as Christine Dabis has made pretty clear in a number of comments on the WeSupportPascale Facebook page, his lack of comment during this current situation is telling.

      The fact of the matter is, immigration law changed in a big way in 1997. It used to be that any US citizen could marry anyone they wanted to, at any time they wanted to, and that person was automatically shuttled into the green card system. That is no longer the case.

      I happen to personally understand why this change occurred. When I worked at a prominent casino show in Reno in 1978, there was a marriage mill going on whereby stagehands were encouraged to marry the Bluebells, very pretty girls from poor districts of Belgium, the UK, Portugal, and Spain. I declined to participate, but many of my cohorts did not, and they married and then divorced after a couple of years usually. I don’t remember any kids coming out of these assignations, it was purely business, and a lot of money changed hands.

      So here we are today. Pascale and Susan in a loving relationship for 15 years, and then they are married a short 5 months ago, after DOMA is shot down.

      Why would ICE even want to mess with this? It defies logic. Sure, Pascale made some bad decision lying to the police. But as Sally Harris mentioned in a comment on the Bee website, what the heck was the CHP doing monitoring this intersection? Seems odd. But my spidey sense says this was just an unfortunate coincidence and the CHP folks are wishing they could walk this back big time.

      Senator Boxer will be the catalyst and the final fixer of a resolution. God speed to her.

      Michael A.

  9. Ben Emery says:

    Michael,
    What has happen from the second hand information and a couple articles I have read the reason the feds were brought in so quickly was automatic procedures kick in when a felony is committed. Pascale used Susan’s identity (which is very understandable) with the Hwy Patrol, which is a felony. If Pascale admitted to not having a drivers license as herself all of this other stuff wouldn’t have happened but other things might have, who knows.

    The question in my mind does that felony have to be proved in a court of law or not before it the feds/ ICE are notified?

    The type of visa that was used in her original stay in the US was a type that waves your due process rights if the person stays longer than the 90 days.

    I am hoping and I have contacted La Malfa, Boxer, and Feinstein offices about keeping her from being fast tracked for deportation but that is all we can really do. To be honest it doesn’t look good because of those automatic processes have been triggered and she is now the system scheduled to be deported.

    From the Sac Bee report
    “On Friday, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement gave her a deportation order signed by Michael Vaughn, assistant field office director, declaring, “You have waived your rights to contest any action for deportation except to apply for asylum … I hereby order that you be removed from the United States of America.

    Fusshoeller was ordered to be deported because she entered the United States on the visa waiver program, which allows foreign visitors from Luxembourg and about 40 other countries to enter the United States without a visa as long as they agree to leave within 90 days, said her immigration lawyer, Jim Byrne.

    “Since she’s overstayed the 90 days, she has no right to a hearing or due process; she waived that when she came in,” Byrne said.”

    Read more here: http://www.sacbee.com/2013/10/11/5814044/well-known-web-editor-faces-possible.html#storylink=cpy

  10. Don Baumgart says:

    As Jon Stewart once said, “If Internet petitions did any good we’d all be sitting under a redwood with Mumia Abu-Jamal smoking legal weed.”

  11. Ben Emery says:

    Exactly Don,
    I sign most but know it is only symbolic and being on record for supporting or opposing a certain issue. I do like Jon’s version of reality if online petitions worked though.

    Call La Malfa, Boxer, and Feinstein.
    http://www.contactingthecongress.org/cgi-bin/newseek.cgi?site=ctc2011&state=ca

  12. Greg Goodknight says:

    “Pascale used Susan’s identity (which is very understandable)”

    No, it isn’t. It’s OK for a party. It’s OK for a lot of things. It isn’t OK when a state police officer has stopped you to give you a ticket for a moving violation. Imagine the fun if it was OK to give someone else’s name for a ticket.

    “If Pascale admitted to not having a drivers license as herself all of this other stuff wouldn’t have happened but other things might have, who knows.”

    Yes, they would have; driving without a license would have caused some problems and she’d probably not have been allowed to get back in the car and drive home, but saying “I don’t have a license, this is my wife’s car and I live at the same address” wouldn’t have raised the same issues. The number of billable hours for legal representation would have been fewer (maybe even zero) and the cops would have an eye out for it happening again.

    Even illegal immigrants have 5th amendment rights. You always have a right to remain silent, but you never have the right to give a false identity or, as Pascale did, give the identity of someone else, when an officer has the legal power to demand to know who you are. You also generally don’t have a right to resist arrest, also reported by the Bee, and that tends to piss officers off. Expect the law has been looking at Susan Levitz’s driving record and pulling any past moving violations to compare signatures… if Pascale has been driving without a license for 15 years, what are the chances this is not the first time this has happened, just the first time with the officer having access to DMV file photos and other identifying characteristics while on the side of the road?

    “The question in my mind does that felony have to be proved in a court of law or not before it the feds/ ICE are notified?”

    No; it’s a whole lot cheaper to send them packing. And she has no right to due process because that’s the deal you get when you accept the 90 day tourist visa. Even hetero couples have to jump through that hoop and I know of one who spent 5 years with the wife in the old country because she’d gotten caught with an expired visitor visa.

  13. ben emery says:

    Greg,
    It is understandable why a person who is has taken residence without proper paperwork to give a false identity, especially to someone within your own family who most likely name is on the title and registration of the vehicle that was stopped.

    I am sure she was cordial and cooperative in hopes of getting a ticket and a warning for not having “her” license on her. Go home and her and Susan would pay the fine and take the knocks on their insurance.

    Yes, my question of having to be proven of committing a felony by a court of law is legitimate. But it isn’t what happened so it us now obsolete.

    All reasonable assumptions.

  14. Greg Goodknight says:

    No Ben, it is never reasonable to give a false name to law enforcement attempting to issue a citation, unless you think it’s reasonable to commit a felony in order to avoid a low misdemeanor.

    • Judith Lowry says:

      I would also argue that she most likely panicked and her thinking process made straight for self-preservation, which also translates to the preservation of her family and circle of friends and colleagues. In other words, the whole life and good reputation she has built in her community crashed and probably passed before her eyes the instant she was pulled over. A build up of traumatic stress, from years of essentially hiding in plain sight, and the sudden dreaded confrontation, a worst nightmare scenario, can momentarily overload a person’s mind and obliterate reason. We are all only human are we not?

      I am in favor of supporting U.S. citizenship for this valuable community member and allowing her to live here with her family and continue to make the contributions for which she has earned this county’s affection and respect.

      Let’s not be like the townspeople in The Widow of St. Pierre, held fast by rigid enforcement of rules that nobody really wants or sees the need for. Let’s not be hypocrites and admit to ourselves that our local economy could very well sink if we didn’t have contract labor from undocumented workers just about everywhere you look.

      Pascale’s is a stand out case quite likely to gain more attention outside our county borders. The world could be watching. Let’s hope we show them some class.

      • Greg Goodknight says:

        Did she panic, or just do what she did in the past in the same situation when pulled over for an infraction while driving without a license for the last 15 years? Or had planned to do if stopped? I don’t know, and, I expect, neither do you. All I know is that she represented herself to a state policeman as someone else (a felony) after being stopped for a moving violation because she was driving without a license and wanted to avoid being cited for that misdemeanor, and resisted arrest after the officer saw through it.

        Going back to the 5th amendment issue… you have a right to remain silent but you don’t have a right to lie. Yes, it’s hard to lie well when your adrenal glands are working overtime, which makes it all the better to shut up. It’s also never illegal to tell the truth, and you don’t have to say anything if it might tend to incriminate you. What a country.

        It’s unlikely that, 15 years ago, the couple had actually gotten to the point where they’d have married before the visa expired had a lawful marriage been available to them. Uncounted US couples in a similar situation, straight or same-sex, when faced with this have followed the law: go back to the country you promised to return to within that 90 days, lest you get deported and not be allowed to come back at all for a long time. In short, immigration for a spouse isn’t slam dunk easy for straight married couples, either, and the reason for the lack of due process if caught is the ease in which people from friendly and usually law abiding countries can get the visitor visa.

        They didn’t get married five years ago last May when the door was opened in California for a few weeks and eighteen thousand or so couples took advantage of that (and I have my own legal ties to my Person B as an unintended side effect). Did they ever get married in their own extra-legal ceremony in front of friends and family in that 15 years, or was a lifetime pledge only entertained when it had the chance of altering Pascale’s immigration status?

        I don’t know the couple, and I’ve only visited yubanet a handful of times. Reading more of the editorial content since this kerfuffle started, I see why the local left is so enamored. However, justice is supposed to be blind, and now that it appears that pressure has slowed the process, I expect the law will be applied fairly and if they can let her stay in the letter of the law, they will. If not, well, expect Luxembourg to honor the marriage and let them stay there while the time of exclusion (hardly a visit by Mme. Guillotine) ticks away. Maybe Feinstein & Boxer would push a special through the Senate for them and others in similar circumstances.

  15. Ben Emery says:

    Greg,
    When is the last time you remained silent with a police officer and they were ok with it? The odds were in her favor to play dumb, get the moving violation, and possible warning or fix it ticket of proving to the court system she in fact had her license. I would say the odds were probably 3 to 1 she drives away. Only Pascale and the officer know why it didn’t go that way.

    This issue is an equality issue more than anything else. If she was allowed to legally marry and it recognized by the State/ Federal government she most likely would have been a citizen long ago living without any fear of deportation.

  16. Greg Goodknight says:

    Ben, I’ll put you down as preferring being charged with a felony over a misdemeanor and being cool with lying to law enforcement. It takes all kinds. Trust me, lie, and if it goes to trial the jury will be advised that you can take the lie as evidence the accused knew they were guilty; I’ve been on that jury.

    Lying isn’t playing dumb, it’s being dumb.

    It doesn’t matter if LE is “OK with” clamming up, it’s their job to interview folks and get the best evidence they can for the biggest offense they can. The more a person confesses to when first contacted the easier their job, and a lie gives them probable cause to go much further than they imagined at the start. Don’t give more than the minimum, and don’t lie, and they might huff and puff but they’d have to go with what they already knew when booking you and your lawyer will have a much easier time defending you. You really can’t make it better, you can only make it worse.

    It remains that if Pascale had given the minimum she’d never have gone further than a local holding cell, for a very short time if at all, and ICE would not have been called. I’d also be surprised if the CHP didn’t have a video recording of the whole episode.

    Repeat after me, “On the advice of counsel, I will remain silent”. Or use Jerry Brown’s old line if they think you have been drinking and ask if you have been drinking: ‘Driving while intoxicated is against the law and I follow the law as best I can.’

    • Judith Lowry says:

      The quality of mercy is not strain’d
      It droppeth as the gentle rain from Heaven
      upon the place beneath. It is twice blest:
      It blesseth he who gives and he who takes.

      Out of the myriad Anglo-Christian versions of God, I’ll go with the kind and loving one.

    • Ben Emery says:

      Greg,
      I guess you are having a hard time empathizing with Pascale’s situation. Think about what you are saying while knowing if found out you will be ripped from your home, your life, and your wife to be deported thousands of miles away.

      • Chris Peterson says:

        Although Greg’s opinion may be seen as harsh in a setting where you all know the person caught in the system, he is, IMHO, only pointing out the legal realities facing Pascale.

        You don’t offer a reasonable defense by confronting the legal system on the basis that, “She’s a nice person.” He’s pointing out that that’s not the issue here, and he’s correct. It may feel like a slap in the face; but it’s the reality. Hopefully, her lawyers tact is not one solely of compassion, but somehow the letter of the law, and I wish her every success in that effort.

        • Chris Peterson says:

          By the way; if you’re ever pulled over for speeding, and the cop asks, Do you know how fast you were driving?”, always say “Yes.” Otherwise, you have absolutely no defense from that point on.

          • Greg Goodknight says:

            Chris, thanks for noticing the hard issues.

            Yes, the “do you know how fast you were driving?” is a great example of a question designed to evoke a confession, which would be duly noted by the officer in case the ticket is contested. Say “Yes, 61” and the limit is 55, you’ve just confessed, and maybe a bit more because the officer has you nailed on laser as going 82 and he knows you are lying. Say “No” and you’ve admitted you can’t dispute whatever the officer has judged your speed to be.

            “How fast do you think I was going and how did you determine it?” is another possible response. If they are accurate, think about taking your lumps and cop to it, being thankful you aren’t caught more often.

            The Brits have a saying, “It’s a fair cop”. More should take it to heart.

      • Greg Goodknight says:

        Feelings, Nothing More than Feelings
        …whoa, whoa, whoa, feelings…

        Empathy is easy; it’s the fair application of the laws that is hard. An uncounted number of straights have also been pulled apart when it is found that one had overstayed a vistor’s visa, or some other visa which had expired for one reason or another. Especially if a crime has been committed, like Pascale’s (and yes, lying to the police and claiming you are someone else really are crimes, as is driving without a license). She’d also have dodged that one if only she had the habit of completely stopping at stop signs.

        Should all freshly married same-sex couples be given a pass on the immigration laws while breeders continue to be pulled apart for the same situations? Or maybe we should make legal decisions based on the weight of Facebook +1’s?

  17. Ben Emery says:

    Chris,
    The position isn’t about Monday morning legal realities it has been how the Sunday game should have been played. What happens now is where Greg’s advice is helpful.

    We are talking about a person who is and has been living without proper permission for living in the country for over a decade. When the odds are 75% you drive away by saying you are the person on the title but just forgot your license vs. 100% being arrested if you are honest no person who wants to stay in the country would choose the latter.

    It is easy for us to sit back and be back seat drivers with all of the information and chronology of how the incident took place but as I mentioned to Greg some empathy is what is needed to understand the way she went. I bet anything she didn’t realize the policy of minor traffic violations aren’t what trigger the notification of ICE. I also bet she didn’t realize that what she signed on the original visa was waiving her rights to due process. Fine print gets us every time.

    • Chris Peterson says:

      Given the situation, I don’t think any answer was going to suffice. But as you say; it is what it is and I wish her all the luck. One thing that would be considered in any judges decision would be a petition signed by family, neighbors and friends. We have all signed, but there’s many more avenues of soliciting support right at your fingertips.

  18. Ben Emery says:

    That’s right Chris. As we all figure out as we get more experience in life ” only if we knew back then what we know now” our choices would have been much different. But that would have made those circumstances different altogether, which means all we can do is try to do the best we can in the now.

    Peace and send good thoughts, vibes, and prayers towards Pascale and Susan. I am sure they could use the energy right about now.

  19. Chris Peterson says:

    She’s FREE!

    From Pasquale:

    “Thank You. To each and every person who, over the past 10 days, has sent an email to elected officials and media, made a call, signed a petition, contributed to the legal fund, posted a comment or a “like” on Facebook, thank you.

    I’m home, recovering from solitary confinement and putting both my life and YubaNet back together. I’ll be on KNCO tomorrow (Friday Oct. 18) at 1 pm on Fitzsimmons & Flores, there might be an update in The Union as well but I wanted to share a few tidbits with you first. I can’t give many details on the how and why – simply because we still don’t know – but here’s a basic account as to what happened on Tuesday.

    Very early on Tuesday morning, around 3 or 3:30 am, I was told to get ready for a transfer from Sacramento County Jail. After changing back into my clothes, I was taken via a bus to San Francisco. In the holding cell, phones to make collect calls were available and working. I called Susan and told her where I was. She contacted the attorneys working on our behalf and when I called her back around 8:15 am, we were still facing the uncertainty as to what would happen next. An ICE official came into the holding cell, calling my name. I told Susan I had to go and hung up.

    The official told me I would be taken back and, as I heard it, “released to Sacramento.” I asked what that meant, having arrived from Sacramento two hours before. He said since I lived in the area, they would release me there. Incredulously, I asked if that meant I was going home to Nevada City. He said yes and asked if someone could come and pick me up in Sacramento. I called Susan back and she was just as flabbergasted and elated as I was. Needless to say, she and our good friend Kerri were on their way immediately.

    I was driven back in a smaller van to Sacramento, arrived there around 10:30 and after having my shoes, belt and paperwork returned to me, walked out of the federal building.

    Now we need to find out if the order of removal (deportation) against me has been lifted or suspended. I was released on “prosecutorial discretion” and our attorneys continue to work on finding out what happened, the status of the ICE order and possible charges by Nevada County. Thank you so much for helping to get me back and hopefully keep me here. It’s by no means over, but I am finally home.”

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