Posted 10:53 PM 9/18/2012 : Tucson Police react to SB 1070 ruling
A federal judge today ruled that starting immediately law enforcement in Arizona can check the immigration status of those they encounter while enforcing other laws.
The provision regards section 2B of SB 1070, the so-called "show me your papers" provision, the focus of a two-year legal battle. Parts of the immigration law have been in effect for over two years now.
According to Chief Roberto Villaseñor, the way his officers conduct themselves will not change but this ruling will tremendously add to the departments workload, "We are mandating phone calls and when we contact border patrol probably about 50-thousand times a year that we weren't doing before, said Villaseñor, "so to say this hasn't changed how we do business I don't think is a accurate"
While Villaseñor says reasons for stops and conduct while detaining someone will not be altered, he says officers will focus more on residency status. "It is going to cause every officer to key on immigration aspect in some form" he said, "because my concern also is that if we don't we can be accused of not following or enforcing the law.
Some members of the hispanic community, like Robert Garcia, say that will amount to racial profiling, "I do feel that law enforcement will act differently towards hispanic people than white people, because they will now think that they have the right to pull them over because they look a certain way".
Villaseñor also said that 90% of the time the Border Patrol will not have any information on the person they inquire about regarding immigration status. That means that it will be up to the officer's discretion as to what to do with the person they have detained.
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