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Ross: Figuring out who to deport is a slippery slope

Can we really predict which immigrants will commit crimes? (Photo by Erik McGregor/LightRocket via Getty Images)

There was a story in the Seattle area about a suspect arrested for a minor crime, who it turns out sneaked into the country illegally. Because it’s a sanctuary area, the jail released him without alerting immigration.

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You know where this is going — a few weeks after his release the suspect committed murder, and so the story became, “if only he’d been deported, the murder would never have happened.”

Well sure, we can say that after the fact, but so what?

We know we can’t deport everybody. Unless there is a way to detect which illegals are likely to become murderers, this is plain old fear-mongering.

Just to make sure, I asked the Seattle area director of enforcement for Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Nathalie Asher, if there is such a thing as a priority list of dangerous illegals, for those who might be expected to commit a major crime.

“For us to be able to project someone who is here unlawfully and now they’re going to potentially commit a crime that we could have otherwise avoided, that’s a dangerous slope that we don’t go down,” she noted.

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So, even ICE can’t predict these things, and in fact thinks it’s dangerous to try.

To say after the fact that we could have prevented that crime if only we’d deported the guy who committed it is an exercise in hindsight, whose main effect is to create an undertow of fear. And it’s working.

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