Immigration Rights Advocates Calling on State Lawmakers to Help in “Unique” ICE Arrest

DES MOINES, Iowa -- Immigration rights advocate groups are calling on Iowa’s lawmakers to reunite a woman with her four-month-old son.

Liliana Cruz - Lopez was arrested two weeks ago in Des Moines by Immigration Custom and Enforcement officials.

Advocacy groups have applied for a "stay of removal" which would allow for the mother to be reunited with her baby during the immigration process. Those papers have been denied.

“We’ve tried everything at this point and we aren`t able to shake anything loose and we still have a mom in jail,” says Erica Johnson, Director of American Friends Service Committee. "This is a unique and urgent case that we are calling for all hands on deck."

The groups are now calling for U.S. senators and state lawmakers to intervene and ask the immigration officials to reconsider the process.

The groups claim, Lopez has no criminal record but does have a reentry record. Lopez is charged with reentry into the United States and is being held in the Marshal County Jail.

“The rhetoric you see from the Trump Administration about going after criminals in our opinion they are not going after real criminals. Reuniting with your children is not a crime but under the current administration law if you renter after being deported it`s a felony,” says Madeline Cano of Iowa Citizens of Community Improvement.

The baby is being cared for by family members. The groups have made requests to Governor Reynolds, Senator Ernst, Senator Grassley and Congressman David Young.