TTR News Center

'It’s inhumane what they’re doing to us as mothers,' says Guatemalan woman separated from 5-year-old daughter at US-Mexico border

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By Michael Dobuski

ABC News(ROMA, Texas) — A 22-year-old Guatemalan woman alleges that she and other mothers were treated inhumanely by immigration officers after she crossed the U.S.-Mexico border into Texas and was separated from her 5-year-old daughter for days.

The woman, named Jessica, crossed the Rio Grande near Roma, Texas, on May 22, after allegedly fleeing death threats in her home country, according to a declaration Jessica prepared and signed to share with the media.

After Jessica and her daughter, Rosalinda, were detained, they were driven to a place called the hielera, the document states. “Hielera” translates into English as “cooler” or “freezer.”

Officials then put her and her daughter in a “very dirty cell,” where the floors were covered in food, spilled water and juice, and was so crowded that the pair had to spend the night standing up, according to the document.

Jessica was interviewed the next night, during which an immigration official asked her, “Don’t you know that we will take your daughter?” the declaration states.

“I told him that he could not take my daughter,” Jessica states in the document. “He laughed at me and said, ‘Dont you know the law?'”

The next day, an official told Jessica that she was to leave the “perrera,” which translates to “dog pound,” and appear in court without her daughter, the declaration states. It sounded like she would only be gone for a few hours, so Jessica attempted to quell her daughter’s screams by promising she would be back soon, the document states.

“She tried to hug me but the official pulled her away,” Jessica stated in the document.

Jessica, who was wearing a T-shirt and sweater, was allegedly told by a female immigration officer that she may only wear one of the clothing items to court, the declaration states. She chose the sweater, in case it got cold, and had to take her shirt off in front of several people, “including a line of men,” the document states.

In court, a judge sentenced Jessica for the time she already served in the “perrera” and told her and other parents that they had to do everything they could to get out so they could get their kids back, the document states.

When Jessica returned to the perrera, she was not reunited with Rosalinda, the court document states. When she asked whether she was going to get her daughter back, an immigration officer replied, “Oh yes … well, maybe,” in a “sarcastic” tone and laughed at her, she said in the declaration.

Some of the mothers Jessica was crammed in the cell with stood at the door asking for their children, but the officials did not explain to them what was going on, the document states.

“Some said that I would been separated from my daughter forever,” Jessica stated. “Others said that she would be returned to me.”

At the Guatemalan consulate, Jessica was told her options were to be deported with her daughter, be deported while her daughter stayed with her friend or fight her case while she was in detention, which would result from her being separated from her daughter for months, according to the document.

Jessica had been separated from Rosalinda for at least three days when a female officer took her to an area that contained several children to see her. One of the officials allegedly told Jessica that children over the age of 7 were being separated from their parents but it seemed as if they were separating younger children as well, she stated in the document.

Six days after Jessica and Rosalinda were apprehended, they were driven to the South Texas Family Residential Center in Dilley, Texas, she said. Once they got there, Jessica called the friend who was going to receive her, and the friend informed her that she had received a call asking if she could receive Rosalinda alone because Jessica was being deported, the declaration states.

“I never consented to my daughter going there with me,” Jessica stated in the document.

The mother described the journey from Guatemala as “very difficult” and the “worst thing” she expected she would suffer in her life.

“But my time in the perrera showed me that that was not the case,” she wrote in the document. “Even in my country, which was a lot of poverty, I had never seen such horrible conditions.”

Jessica even alleged that one officer told them they were receiving that kind of treatment to discourage more people from coming, instructing Jessica to tell her family what it was like so they would not come, the document states.

Jessica passed her credible fear interview for asylum, and she and Rosalinda are currently living in New Haven, Connecticut, with relatives, her attorney, Katherine Murdza, told ABC News. Jessica still needs to file an asylum application and present her claim in court, Murdza said.

In an interview with ABC News, Jessica said in Spanish that the officers “tore away” her soul when they separated her and her daughter. The officers didn’t tell Jessica where they were taking her 5-year-old, only saying that she would face charges for crossing the Rio Grande.

“I had told her that we would be going to the United States and that everything would be OK,” she said. “That in no moment, we would ever be apart.”

Rosalinda was “extremely traumatized” by the separation and wakes up “suddenly” asking if Jessica is going to leave, according to the document.

“Now I cannot leave her alone even for a minute. My daughter panics when I go into the bathroom,” Jessica stated. “She wants me to stay at school with her. She did not act like this before.”

Rosalinda told her mother that during their time apart she was “very afraid,” Jessica told ABC News. When the mother and daughter finally …read more

Source:: National News


Thursday Tropical Wave Update

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Good morning,

Here is an update on the tropical wave we are monitoring over the western Caribbean Sea.

What We Know:

  • The system remains disorganized near the Yucatan Peninsula.
  • Environmental conditions are looking less conducive for tropical cyclone development in the southwest Gulf of Mexico as the area of disturbed weather moves west-northwest Friday through the weekend. The National Hurricane Center has reduced the chance of tropical cyclone formation during the next 5 days to only 10%.
  • We do expect an increase in moisture, tied to the tropical wave, to move into the region during the upcoming weekend and persist through Wednesday, providing periods of good rain chances.
  • Generally a widespread 2-3 inches of rain is expected Sunday through Wednesday, however, isolated pockets of 5-7 inches are possible. It is currently difficult to pinpoint locations where these pockets could occur. Overall, confidence has increased slightly in this rainfall forecast since yesterday.
  • It should be stressed this is a rainfall forecast over a 4 day period and generally speaking significant, widespread flooding concerns are currently not anticipated given the ongoing drought conditions. However, given the tropical nature of the airmass, there could be some pockets where higher rainfall rates produce minor flooding issues.
  • Please follow and share only trusted sources, such as forecasts from the experts at the National Hurricane Center (www.hurricanes.gov).

What We Don’t Know:

  • It is too soon to have high confidence on locations where the isolated heavier pockets of rainfall will occur across South Central Texas.

When We Will Know More:

  • Confidence in rainfall amounts and locations should continue to increase through the weekend.
  • Another update will be provided by Friday morning.

Additional Information Resources:


Jason Runyen
NWS Austin / San Antonio
Weather Forecast Office
2090 Airport Road
New Braunfels, TX 78130

Governor Abbott Appoints Jones To Board Of Pardons And Paroles

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By lauren.mccanse@gov.texas.gov Governor Greg Abbott has appointed Carmella Jones to the Board of Pardons and Paroles for a term set to expire on February 1, 2019. Governor Greg Abbott has appointed Carmella Jones to the Board of Pardons and Paroles for a term set to expire on February 1, 2019. The board makes parole decisions for Texas prison inmates, determines conditions for parole and mandatory supervision, and makes recommendations on clemency matters to the governor.

Carmella Jones of Eastland has 25 years of law enforcement and corrections experience. She was elected as Armstrong County Sheriff and served as sheriff for six years. She is a lifetime member of the Texas Jail Association, Sheriff’s Association of Texas, and the Girl Scouts of America and a member of the Texas Chief Deputies Association and the American Jail Association. Jones has earned certifications including Master Peace Officer, Master Jailer, and Texas Commission on Law Enforcement Instructor.

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Source:: Office of the Governor


Governor Abbott Appoints Martinez And Molina To Texas Medical Board

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By lauren.mccanse@gov.texas.gov Governor Greg Abbott has appointed Robert David Martinez, M.D. and Linda Molina to the Texas Medical Board for terms set to expire on April 13, 2019 and April 13, 2021.Governor Greg Abbott has appointed Robert David Martinez, M.D. and Linda Molina to the Texas Medical Board for terms set to expire on April 13, 2019 and April 13, 2021, respectively. The board regulates the practice of medicine in Texas.

Robert David Martinez, M.D. of Mission is the chief medical officer and chief physician executive at Doctors Hospital at Renaissance in Edinburg and senior executive vice president of DHR Health. He is a member of the Texas Medical Association, American Medical Association, and multiple community organizations. He has served as co-chair of the Ryan Gibson Leukemia Advocate and Research Group, member of the Texas Alzheimer’s Association and the Texas Workforce Solutions Board of Directors. Martinez received a Bachelor of Arts in psychology and biology from the Southern Methodist University and a Doctor of Medicine from The University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston, where he also completed his internal medicine residency.

Linda Molina of San Antonio is a criminal defense attorney in private practice. She is a member of the State Bar of Texas, San Antonio Criminal Defense Lawyers Association, and a member of the Emerging Leader Board for Southern Methodist University Dedman School of Law. Additionally, she is a member of the Rotary Club of San Antonio and sustaining member of Junior League of San Antonio, and a board member of Church Under the Bridge. Molina received a Bachelor of Arts in English and Spanish from Southern Methodist University, a Master of Arts in Spanish from The University of Texas at San Antonio, and a Juris Doctor degree from the Southern Methodist University Dedman School of Law.

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Source:: Office of the Governor


Suspect at large after four cars struck by gunfire near Seattle airport

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iStock/Thinkstock(SEATTLE) — Authorities are searching for at least one person who opened fire on four cars traveling down Highway 509 near Seattle-Tacoma International Airport.

The highway near the airport was shut down for more than five hours while Washington Highway Patrol searched for the shooter Wednesday afternoon.

Seattle resident Mary Ertl’s windshield was one of those struck.

“I heard a boom, and then glass all over my face,” Ertl told ABC affiliate KOMO-TV. “I thought it was a rock until I looked at the passenger side, and then I knew it was a bullet.”

Although no one was hurt, the western-most runway at the airport also was temporarily closed as a precaution. The highway later fully reopened.

Investigators told KOMO-TV the shooter likely was on foot, on the side of the highway, based on the trajectory of the bullets. Each vehicle was hit on the driver’s side.

“When we’re arriving at things like this, we are putting on our active-shooter gear — which is a blessing to have — the heavier vests that stops rifles and helmets,” trooper Rick Johnson told KOMO-TV.

Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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Source:: National News


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