The commissioners of Bernalillo County, New Mexico, home of Albuquerque, the largest city in the state, declared the county “immigrant friendly” in 2017.
As of Tuesday of this week, it is now friendlier than ever. On that night, the commission unanimously passed a resolution declaring that henceforth Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials will no longer be granted access to information about inmates in the county jail, although the information is public record.
In support of the resolution, former commission chairman Steven Michael Quezada declared, “All humans are the same no matter where they come from or how they got here. Just because you are up there [in jail], you are not a criminal. You have to be proven guilty, and again, that is a human right.”
On a side note, Mr. Quezada, described in his official biography as “a rising star in New Mexico’s thriving film and television industry,” played the role of Steven Gomez, a DEA agent, on the Breaking Bad television series.
Unfortunately, Mr. Quezada’s experience as a TV officer appears not to have acquainted him with certain legal niceties, such as the fact that since inmates are already in jail, their “human right” not to be there has already been breached. It is common and proper to inquire if any person in custody might also be guilty of other crimes, such as sneaking into the country.
But, in this case as in many others these days, emotion is a lot more fun than reason.
For more, see KOAT Action News.