Freeholders issue new policy to limit help to ICE

Posted: Updated:
NEW BRUNSWICK -

Middlesex County passed a new policy that prevents sheriff’s officers from helping U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, or ICE, detain immigrant residents inside county buildings.

The policy came after an incident at the county courthouse on March 30, when sheriff’s officers were used by ICE to detain a man who had been freed.

While residents are pleased with the new policy, they say they're still concerned that ICE is at the county jail two to three times per week questioning immigrants.

"ICE agents press them to sign papers to self deport without any attorney present," said Ellen Witt. "If they don't sign, ICE tells them they will keep returning."

While freeholders can't keep ICE out of their county jails, they are now giving inmates fact sheets that tell them their rights before being questioned by ICE.

Freeholders also say that all officers will now be held accountable for their actions.

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