On December 26 of last year, Newman, California Corporal Ronil Singh was shot and killed by Paulo Virgen Mendoza when he pulled Mendoza over for suspected drunk driving.
Mendoza not only had a warrant out for his arrest for unlicensed and uninsured driving, but he was also an illegal alien. After he fled the scene, seven of his illegal-alien friends helped him dispose of the gun and planned to smuggle him back into Mexico.
None of this would have happened if Mendoza had been taken into custody for being in the U.S. illegally the first time he had an encounter with police. But, thanks to California being a Santuary state, all law enforcement officers are prohibited from asking suspects the status of their citizenship.
The very meaning of "sanctuary" is a place of safety or refuge. The purpose of sanctuary cities and states is to prevent minorities from being targeted or harassed simply because of the color of their skin. Fair enough - we definitely don’t want to become the Third Reich, where a person is randomly commanded to produce citizenship papers while running errands. But when a person is breaking the law, such as driving without a license and insurance, one would think it perfectly valid to ask for proof of citizenship, especially in a country with a growing problem of illegal immigration. If we want to avoid any chance of being racists, then make it so that anyone who gets convicted of a crime – no matter that color of their skin – is asked to produce proof of their citizenship.
Citizenship aside, why wasn’t Mendoza arrested the first time he was pulled over and found to not have a license or insurance? California law requires both….though he might have been issued just a warning and a fine.
Now let’s look at this from a Constitutional perspective. Immigration is not addressed in the original U.S. Constitution. It wasn’t until 1875 when the Supreme Court passed a law declaring the federal government to be in charge of all immigration issues. According to the 10th amendment, immigration issues should be left up to the states. This means that having (or not having) sanctuary status is a state’s right, but at the same time, U.S. law requires all non-U.S. citizens to apply for a visa in order to move to or stay in the U.S. for an extended amount of time.
Regardless, a police officer was killed at the hands of a man who was in the U.S. illegally. It’s not the first time, and it probably won’t be the last. If we want to support and save our men and women in blue, we need to return our nation to the righteous and just country it once was.