An Immigration and Customs Enforcement officer reportedly broke an immigration attorney’s foot who tried to enter an ICE facility in Kansas City, Missouri.
Attorney Andrea Martinez said she arrived at the building to drop off a 3-year-old undocumented boy, who was identified only as Noah, so he could be reunited with his mother before they are deported to Honduras.
Kenia Bautista-Mayorga, 23, who is six months pregnant and lived with her family in Texas. She was detained by ICE in May when they travelled to Iowa. They were stopped by Missouri Highway patrol and the woman was asked to provide proof of citizenship.
The 23-year-old is an undocumented immigrant from Honduras. She arrived in the United States with her son. Although she regularly checked-in with ICE, she accidentally missed a court hearing which led to an order of removal from the country. The woman was immediately detained by highway patrol —without her child.
Martinez along with Bautista-Mayorga’s partner, Luis Alfredo Diaz-Inestroza, and a dozen of other activists showed up the ICE facility to reunite the mother and son before their removal. They were anxiously waiting for the family to reunite in the parking lot but they were told by ICE agents that the exchange would happen indoors and not in front of cameras or protestors.
As the lawyer accompanied Diaz-Inestroza and Noah inside the building, an ICE agent reportedly blocked her way and shoved Martinez away. As a result, she fell onto the ground, cut her left foot and knee and fractured her right foot.
“He slammed the door on us,” Martinez said. “The ICE officer pushed us out and didn’t let us follow our three-year-old client into the lobby, and then pushed me to the ground. I was wearing high heels, so that’s when my foot was fractured and my leg got all bloody. And then my pants ripped. But then he called me back in and detained me for another forty minutes or an hour.”
The attorney added she was locked in a room where she was not allowed to use her mobile phone or call 911. She was not given medical assistance for hours despite the fact she kept telling ICE agents that she is bleeding and needs medical help.
However, ICE officials maintained that her injury was not “severe enough.” That is when things got worse for her and her foot began swelling. Martinez was later transported to a hospital in a stretcher.
Diaz-Inestroza was also detained after the incident and hasn’t been released as of now.
“They still have Luis detained, which is a big concern because they had told us yesterday that they were not going to be detaining Luis,” said Martinez.
ICE released a statement in wake of the incident and said they are “looking into the matter.”
“Early this morning an incident occurred at the Kansas City ICE office while ICE (Enforcement and Removal Operations) officers were attempting to reunite a mother with a family member. We take any allegations against ICE personnel very seriously and are looking into the matter,” read the statement.
Spotlight, Banner: Getty Images, Spencer Platt