San Bernardino County Sheriff issues statement on the California Values Act
Shortly after Governor Brown signed Senate Bill 54, the California Values Act into law, San Bernardino County Sheriff John McMahon issued a statement clarifying the Department’s position on immigration detainers.
“We do not use our resources to enforce federal immigration law. I do not want the fear of someone’s immigration status to prevent them from reporting crimes or interacting with our deputies… Our department’s primary responsibility is for the safety of all individuals,” said Sheriff McMahon in the statement.
McMahon also acknowledged concern that the new law would restrict the department’s ability to communicate with ICE.
SB 54 extends local “sanctuary city” protections for immigrants living in California without legal documentation. Specifically, it bans state and local agencies, excluding the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, from enforcing “holds” on people in custody.
It also blocks the deputization of police as immigration agents and bars state and local law enforcement agencies from inquiring into an individual’s immigration status.
The statement concluded, “Our Department’s position on immigration detainers will not change. We do not honor immigration detainers without a legal warrant signed by a federal judge. Our Department prides itself in providing the highest level of law enforcement services to all our communities.”
The bill takes effect January 1, 2018.