A few hours before Jose Robles was illegally deported to the US for 1
Robles of Mexico stands behind the doors of Gethsemane Lutheran Church in Seattle and the people who have given him refuge and shelter say he will stay there for the foreseeable future. The only thing that worries his followers is when immigration and customs officials decide to come through the doors of the church to seize him and continue the deportation. A night watch for Robles took place Thursday night in the church, which attracted dozens of people to the main hall of the church.
Seattle City Council member Kshama Sawant joined the night watch for Robles and summarized the room's attitude: "Please join me in the ICE and the Trump regime," Steer clear of Jose. " Scroll to continue Read
More news from KIRO 7
DOWNLOAD OUR FREE MESSAGES APP
Robles addressed the crowd in Spanish, thanked them and said he had no choice to seek refuge in the church. Robles & # 39; s daughter Brenda said the idea that he lives in the church, apart from his little daughters, was something they still reconciled.
"I find it absurd that we are here (in the church), there is no reason why we should be here," she said.
Brenda says her father hurried to church early Thursday morning. They made the decision an hour before he was on a flight to Mexico.
Robles came to the US illegally with his family 18 years ago – and has no serious criminal record, according to his lawyer and family. Brenda Robles says that they worked to bring their father into legal status for almost a decade. Brenda Robles is a DACA recipient like Robles' 19-year-old daughter. His eight-year-old daughter is a citizen.
"We have fought for eight years against my father's case and we are constantly denied, there is absolutely no reason to deny us," said Brenda Robles.
Robles has recently been the victim of an armed robbery and helped Lakewood police solve the crime. This qualifies him to apply for a U-visa.
He was rejected. When KIRO 7 asked the town of Lakewood, we were told that state law prevented them from discussing the case. Pastor Joanne Enqguist of the Gethsemane Lutheran Church says Robles will remain in the church without his family, hoping for a solution that holds them together. "It's a religious community, so ICE should stay out there, but I have much less confidence …"
Brenda Robles also lacks confidence in immigration authorities. "We are always scared that they can just come in and separate a family."
KIRO 7 reached out to ICE to see if they intended to enter the church to arrest Robles. The agency gave KIRO 7 no direct answer and referred KIRO 7 to guidelines that the agency uses to deal with "sensitive" places, including churches. ICE says enforcement at sensitive locations is generally avoided, unless there are circumstances.
© 2018 Cox Media Group.