By Joe Guzzardi
June 29, 2016
Last year, in one of the most shocking, senseless and preventable murders an illegal alien has ever perpetrated, Haitian Jean Jacques stabbed and killed 25-year-old Casey Chadwick in her Connecticut home. An autopsy revealed that Chadwick had sustained 15 stab wounds about her face and neck.
The circumstances leading up to Chadwick's brutal murder demonstrate the colossal failure of the Department of Homeland Security to protect the young woman. Jacques’ case was so egregiously mishandled that three Democratic Connecticut congressmen, Senators Richard Blumenthal and Chris Murphy and U.S. Rep. Joe Courtney, all supporters of increased immigration, requested that DHS’ Office of Inspector General (OIG) investigate and submit a formal report.
Despite Jacques' lengthy rap sheet and the obvious threat he represented, OIG found a mind-boggling inability among Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials to effectively deport the Haitian national.
In 1997, Jacques was convicted of attempted murder and sentenced to 16 years in prison. Five years later, a federal immigration judge ordered Jacques deported when he finished serving his sentence.
On three separate occasions during 2012, ICE put Jacques on a charter flight to Haiti. But the local government refused to accept Jacques each time on the grounds that his identification didn't confirm his Haitian citizenship. After the third deportation attempt, a Haitian customs officer suggested that ICE contact the Haitian consulate in Miami for help getting Jacques' proper ID. ICE ignored this recommendation, and instead released Jacques, requiring only that he check in at immigration offices every few months. Jacques was subsequently re-arrested for parole violations in 2014, jailed again, then re-released four months before he murdered Chadwick.
OIG cited four factors in ICE’s failure to remove Jacques. First was the Supreme Court’s ruling that limits how long an alien can be detained. Second was an overburdened ICE caseload which forces officials to prioritize convicted, violent criminals on the basis of ease of their removal rather than the risk they pose to the public. Third was ICE’s failure to reach out to the Haitian consulate to secure Jacques’ proof of citizenship. ICE didn’t contact Jacques’ mother or other family members to secure his birth certificate which the Haitian consulate requires. Fourth was ICE’s decision not to ask the State Department for its assistance. State normally limits its involvement in immigration proceedings to known terrorists or human rights violators, but the gravity of Jacques’ crimes should have warranted its intervention.
Sens. Blumenthal, Murphy and Rep. Courtney issued a joint statement chastising ICE for not having done more to remove Jacques before he murdered Chadwick. Earlier this month, Jacques was sentenced to 60 years in prison.
Although President Obama has repeatedly vowed to deport criminal aliens like Jacques, he hasn’t fulfilled his promise. Last year, ICE released 90,000 illegal aliens deemed criminal threats into the general population. Rep. Courtney summed up the administration’s failures when he said that despite the White House’s assurances that it will remove foreign-born criminals living unlawfully in the U.S., little has been done to meet that goal.
Chadwick’s murder at the hands of a criminal alien is one among thousands that occur all too frequently. Americans should be protected from known, violent, alien felons. Americans want a secure border, a safe interior, and criminal aliens’ removal, basic protections they deserve but that the Obama administration has repeatedly denied them.
Joe Guzzardi is a Californians for Population Stabilization Senior Writing Fellow. Contact him at [email protected]. Find him on Twitter @joeguzzardi19