A U.S. citizen improperly held in a county jail for months was finally released after the ACLU of Colorado contacted the United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement Agency (ICE). Although the individual had been sentenced to community corrections, his transfer from jail was obstructed by an ICE “hold,” used for the purpose of investigating someone ICE suspects of being in the country unlawfully. This hold prevented him from moving from the jail to a less restrictive halfway house, though the evidence was clear that he was a U.S. citizen. The ACLU of Colorado was first contacted by the individual’s attorney, who had been trying for months to get ICE officials to remove the hold on his client. The attorney sent copies of the individual’s Arizona birth certificate, Colorado identification card, and social security card to ICE to prove that his client was a U.S. citizen, all to no avail. Shortly after the ACLU of Colorado contacted ICE, they removed the hold and the individual was cleared to be released from the jail to a community corrections setting. The attorney wrote the ACLU of Colorado, “I just received notice today that the ICE hold . . . has been dismissed. I wanted to take a moment to thank you for the wonderful job you did in getting this accomplished.”


Mark Silverstein, ACLU of Colorado Legal Director; Mark Silverstein, ACLU of Colorado Legal Director