The Bristol County Sheriff, Massachusetts, is targeting Homeland Security Secretary (DHS) Alejandro Mayorkas after announcing that Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) will no longer use a migrant detention center in the county that was the subject of misconduct allegations, with the sheriff describing it as “political success work.”
âShame on the Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security. Alejandro Mayorkas for placing his leftist political agenda above public safety by terminating the Bristol County Sheriff’s Office’s contracts with the Immigration and customs, âSheriff Thomas Hodgson said in a statement.
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“This is nothing more than a political success orchestrated by Sec. Mayorkas, the Biden administration and other anti-law enforcement groups to punish outspoken critics and advance their partisan agenda to score. political points, âhe said.
His statement came after DHS said it would no longer use the C. Carlos Carreiro Immigration Detention Center in Bristol County, and the Irwin County Detention Center in Ocilla, Georgia. Both were led by ICE.
The Bristol County facility, managed under an agreement with the local sheriff’s office, is “no longer operationally necessary,” DHS said in a statement.
The Washington Post reported that the Bristol County Sheriff’s Office is under investigation after staff used pepperballs and a flash bang on inmates who threw chairs at staff in the middle of a dispute over COVID-19 testing and isolation. The Associated Press reported on other allegations of overcrowding and excessive use of force.
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Meanwhile, Irwin’s facility has come under accusations from a whistleblower that it performed unwanted medical acts such as hysterectomies on migrant women in detention.
Mayorkas did not explicitly explain why DHS will no longer use prisons, but made an apparent reference to the allegations in a statement.
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“Let me state a fundamental principle: we will not tolerate the mistreatment of people in civilian immigration detention or unsanitary conditions of detention,” Mayorkas said in a note to the acting director of ICE, Tae Johnson.
“We have an obligation to make lasting improvements to our system of detaining civilian migrants,” Mayorkas said. âThis is an important first step towards achieving this goal. DHS detention centers and the treatment of individuals there will be subject to our health and safety standards. Where we find they fall short, we will continue to act as we do. today.”
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Hodgson said the move puts “residents of Bristol County, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and the United States of America at greater risk of being victimized by illegal alien criminals.”
ICE Acting Director Tae Johnson had said earlier that the agency “will continue to ensure it has sufficient detention space to accommodate non-citizens, where appropriate.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.