A 31-year-old undocumented Honduran bicyclist, Marcos Antonio Huete, was hit by a truck in April as he was riding his way to work — but the policeman, instead of first providing medical assistance, asked if he was “illegal.”
After being hit, the Honduran immigrant lay sprawled on the grassy sidewalk in Key West, Florida, and was awaiting help, when a policeman approached him.
“Passport, visa, what? You illegal? Are you illegal? Citizen or no? You speak English? You only speak Spanish, all right?” the officer asked Huete, according to a footage taken by the officer’s body camera. A second officer who arrived on the scene later asked the man in Spanish if he needed an ambulance.
Huete had to call his sister to take him to a hospital where he was given pain medication and crutches. After he was discharged, the officer told the man, who sustained bruises on his legs, to come back to the location of the accident where Huete was fined $75 by the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FHP) for causing the accident. The police report determined that Huete had “darted out in front” of a woman’s GMC Sierra pickup truck and decided the immigrant was at fault. The 44-year-old woman involved was not charged.
Huete was then detained and is now awaiting deportation back to Honduras at the Krome Detention Center in Miami, Florida. The man has a deportation order from 2010 and has criminal charges for illegally entering the country, according to Univision.
Regardless of Huete‘s history, the cop’s initial response to the accident is insensitive .His wounds should have been the cop’s primary concern. The immigrant was injured enough that he couldn’t have fled the scene even if the officer had taken the time to call an ambulance first.
The incident highlights the fact that any altercation between law enforcement officers and immigrants can lead to them being arrested and handed over to Immigration and Customs Enforcement agencies — regardless of the whether the person is injured or is a victim of sexual or domestic abuse.
Many immigrants are now afraid to report crimes against them for fear that they would be ordered to show their immigration documents.
@UnivisionNews If he was black, the cop would have opened fire. That mangled bike is a weapon.— Qubort (@TheRealQubort) May 24, 2017
@UnivisionNews Shame on this officer. a person's safety not the first thing you think of? Is this what we have to look forward to? Carrying papers around?— Mary St. George (@KeukaRealEstate) May 24, 2017
@UnivisionNews What kind of shit is that? A man got run over by a vehicle.So much— Chris Dalbey (@cadalbey) May 25, 2017
for that whole "Serve and protect" thing...