An undocumented immigrant couple was killed in a rollover car crash this week while trying to evade Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officers who pulled them over near Delano. ICE believed the male driver was a different undocumented immigrant who was being sought for arrest. The couple, identified as Santos Hilario Garcia, 35, and Marcelina Garcia Profecto, 33, leaves behind six children and one grandchild.
According to news reports, ICE agents were staking out the wrong house early Tuesday morning when Garcia and Profecto left the house and drove away in an SUV. ICE pulled the vehicle over, but when the agents emerged from the vehicle, Garcia sped away, eventually losing control of his vehicle and crashing into a power pole and overturning. Garcia and Profecto were pronounced dead at the scene.
It is unknown if ICE had an active order to remove either immigrant from the country. The couple was from the Mexican state of Guerrero and did not speak English nor Spanish. A fear of a communication barrier may have caused the couple to flee. The couple was reportedly seeking work on local farms when the tragedy occurred.
Many undocumented immigrants in California and across the country are rightly worried about possible immigration action. Arrests of undocumented immigrants without a criminal history are significantly higher in recent months. The Law Offices of Scott Warmuth strongly recommends seeking any possible avenue to legal residency.