In a slew of executive orders, President Joe Biden is rolling back the safer, stricter immigration laws implemented by the Trump administration. These recent actions included a reversal of an executive order that prioritized the prosecution of illegal immigrants who have been charged with committing violent crimes. Now, the Biden administration is struggling to address the crisis at our southern border.
Today, Rep. Randy Feenstra (R-IA04) partnered with Sen. Joni Ernst (R-Iowa) and introduced Sarah’s Law in the U.S. House of Representatives. This legislation, recently re-introduced in the U.S. Senate by Ernst, would require immigration authorities to keep illegal immigrants in custody if they are accused of killing someone or inflicting serious bodily injury.
Sarah’s Law is named after Sarah Root, an Iowan who was tragically struck and killed by an illegal immigrant. Edwin Mejia, the illegal immigrant charged in this case, was under the influence of alcohol — three times the legal limit — and drag racing when Sarah was killed. Mejia was initially taken into custody by local law enforcement, but due to an Obama-era policy loophole, he posted bond and was released — despite being in the country illegally. He has since disappeared and still has not been brought to justice nearly five years after Sarah’s death.
“It is simply unacceptable that Sarah Root’s family still hasn’t gotten the justice they deserve. It is imperative that we close loopholes and fix our broken immigration system before any further injustices take place. It’s simple: Illegal immigrants, especially those accused of committing violent and reckless crimes, should be detained so they can be prosecuted and held accountable to the fullest extent of the law. I look forward to working on this important legislation in the House,” said Rep. Feenstra.
“Five years ago, a loophole allowed an illegal immigrant who murdered a young Iowan to escape the country and justice. We need families in Iowa, and across the country, to know that the federal government will do everything possible to hold murderers accountable. Sarah’s Law brings us one step closer to restoring justice in our broken immigration system by allowing federal law enforcement to detain and prosecute violent criminals. I’m proud to work with Representative Feenstra to make sure we restore justice to our broken immigration system,” said Sen. Ernst.