Archive for the ‘ICE’ Category

My Day In Pictures

June 25, 2009

Yesterday I tried to send hubby some money at the jail so I wouldn’t have to drive the 2 1/2 hours down there to deposit it.  I did it wrong though.  Instead of addressing the money order to “Detainee Trust Fund” and addressing the envelope to him like I was supposed to, I did it the other way around.  They can’t cash a money order that’s addressed to him, so they have to mail it back to me.  We’re 90% positive he’s going to be sent next Tuesday which works out perfectly because my reservation is for Monday, which gets me there one day ahead.  Any money left in his commissary account will be given to him in cash when he leaves, so I didn’t want to take any chances, I wanted to get it on his books before the weekend.   So today I drove down to the jail to deposit money, I wish I could have visited him, but that’s only on Saturdays and Sundays.  I took pictures along the way to entertain myself, and I’ll share them with you.

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Here’s a perfect example of how Texans can butcher any word.  The town of Boerne is pronounced like “Bernie” as in “Weekend at Bernie’s” and Seguin is pronounced like “Seegeen”.  We do it to confuse all you non-Texans…

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The Alamo signs, must be in San Antonio!  They want you to remember.

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Another sign that I’m close to Mexico.  Forget guns, they’re smuggling bikes!  Or maybe they’re bikeguns.  Or bikes filled with cocaine.

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South Texas…flat, dry, and 101 degrees.

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The aftermath of a grass fire.

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More scorched earth in Pearsall.  Those things by the fence are burned cactus plants.

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Driving up to the ICE South Texas Detention Center in Pearsall, Tx.

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A vew from the parking lot.  Those boxes are the fully enclosed “yards” for each unit.  Even the top is covered in chain-link fencing.  Hubby says he avoids them, it’s an easy way to find trouble.

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I got in trouble for taking this picture.  Homeland Security isn’t too keen on people photographing their buildings…

I randomly ran into our lawyer in the parking lot, she was down there for her monthly visit to all her clients in there.  I had no idea but she was planning on visiting my husband too.  It was a very nice surprise.  Because he’s about to be sent out of the country, we don’t have any pressing legal matters, but she did want to check up on his well-being and they were also able to discuss how is case went wrong.  Sounds like he was 100% a victim of the system and the mess that occurred after 9/11.  Also his previous lawyer failed to properly notify him that his appeal had been denied in 2002.  We’re going to try to submit paperwork so that he could possibly come back into the US for visits after two years.

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After purchasing a can of liquid crack from the gas station (they were sold out of mocha, wah) there was nothing more to do than settle in for the long ride home.  I took a few more pictures of San Antonio along the way-

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After that long, long drive back home, I went to Victoria’s Secret because I’ve been wearing the same itchy bra for a year.  Lucky for me they were having their semi-annual sale and I scored 3 very comfy bras for 19.99 each.  Sorry, no pictures!  😉

I took a little nap after going to the mall, and then my mother-in-law dropped my oldest step-daughter off at my house.  She surprised me by giving me a three-stone diamond ring, a gift from my hubby.  I was so surprised!  It replaces my promise ring from when we decided to get married a year ago.  We’ve been common law married for more than a year, but we were waiting to get “officially” married when we saved up more money.  Now we’re planning to get married in Turkey.

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How lovely is that?  I love him so much.  And yes, I’m practically albino.

Still preparing for my flight on Monday…five more days!  I can’t believe it.   I’m going to create a dedicated blog for my Turkish adventure, don’t worry I will provide links to it as soon as it is ready.

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Answer

June 12, 2009

This is a deportation update that’s important enough for its very own post.  If you’re new, welcome! but I’m burned out on making links for this story, so just keep scrolling down.

Okay, so we’ve been sweating bullets over not knowing when they’re going to send him to Turkey.  We pretty much found out earlier this week that they are not going to let him use the ticket I bought him.  Lame, and since the tickets are for THIS coming Monday, I was pretty sure that I was going to have to cancel my flight too (don’t worry I bought Travelocity insurance so I can rebook with only a little fees).  I’m trying to go over there before he does so I can meet him there with money and travel arrangements.  We’re going to be staying with his family in Adana, but he’ll most likely land in Istanbul.  That’s like landing in NY when everyone you know lives in LA.  He won’t have anything with him except what he had on him when he got picked up, just the clothing on his back and his drivers license (I’m still trying to find out if he can keep his DL, I don’t want landing with zero ID).  I am allowed to pack a gym bag for him with only one set of clothes and one pair of shoes (no laces allowed, another piece of stupidity).  Can you image landing in a foreign country with no money, no id, and no phone?  Scary, no?  I know it’s his home country, but he barely speaks the language.

So today we got one imporant answer.  His deportation officer (after much harassing) told our lawyer that hubby will be leaving at the earliest June 29, and at the latest July 3.  They will not give out more information because they think people will try to hijack the planes, more stupidity…

I still need to reschedule my flight, but I’m planning for June 29th now…two weeks!

Another Deportation Update

May 29, 2009

First of all, I want to thank everyone that has come by to lend support.  It really really means a lot to me.

If you are new to this story, see Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3 of the saga.

I haven’t updated in a while because for most of the week nothing has changed.  The only new development was that someone in his unit got swine flu so everybody was quarantined for 7 days.  He’s still technically in quarantine so I can’t go visit him this weekend.  Lame.  Lucky for him, he is pretty much immune to viruses because he has Reiter’s syndrome, which makes him have rashes and arthritis instead of the flu when he gets sick.  But still, being trapped in jail with people with something as horrifying sounding as “swine flu” to someone who is kosher is pretty close to a living hell.  And the no visits thing is retarded, they’re not even contact visits, and you can’t transmit flu through the glass they put them behind or over the phone you have to talk on.

He finally got to speak to his deportation officer today–he had been in ICE detention for more than seven days and no one had yet talked to him about his case.  It was driving us both insane.  The lawyer has been trying to get the people from ICE to talk to her about his case but getting them to talk is a little like pulling teeth.

So because he was able to speak to his officer today, the ball is starting to roll towards getting out.  His travel documents are on the way to his officer from the Turkish consulate.  I booked him a flight for June 15, and tomorrow hopefully we’ll find out if they’re going to accept his travel arrangements.  If we don’t find out tomorrow, we’ll probably have to wait until Monday to hear anything else about his case.

Look to this post for more updates, I’ll be adding them to the bottom.  I’m trying to keep everything on this matter contained to as few posts as possible so you and I both don’t get confused.

Update 6/2/09

When it comes to talking about this situation on here, I go from needing to vent about it to not wanting to talk about it.  A few people commented that we are being really strong and rolling with these unexpected events.  I never thought about it in those terms before they brought it up.  Thanks guys. Life changes, and you never know how or when.  Never once did I think about leaving him just to avoid this situation, although he brought it up a few times.  I can’t imagine my life without him, I even had a really awesome dream about him last night.

Looking up at this post there are a few things that have changed.  First, the quarantine was lifted so I was able to go visit him on Sunday.  Since visiting hours for his unit are only between 8am and 9am I had to leave my house by 5:30am to get there.  In case you don’t know, I live in Austin, and this stupid jail is half way to Mexico.  The visit was okay, it was through glass, and we were both pretty emotional.  I was able to talk to him for almost half an hour though.

Second thing that’s changed, we found out that they are not going to let him use his own ticket, even though when he first got there he was told it was a good idea to book a ticket so that he could get out of there faster.  Fucking liars.  Well there’s 1,300 dollars I can kiss goodbye, at least I’ll get some Travelocity credits and maybe we’ll use them sometime this year.

The best news we’ve gotten so far is that his deportation officer is trying to get him expedited within three weeks, when normal wait time is a few months.  I’m hoping and praying that everything works as planned and he’s going to get out of there as soon as possible.

Trapped in ICE: The Ninth Circle of Hell

May 20, 2009

I haven’t written an update in awhile on this and this.

I learned something new this week, we’re not dealing with the INS, we’re dealing with ICE.  ICE stands for Immigration and Customs Enforcement.  Every time I have to say it to someone it sounds weird coming out of my mouth, so I still call it the INS sometimes.

ICE makes me feel like we’re in Hell, and my husband and I are trapped.  In Dante’s Inferno the final circle of Hell is filled with a lake of ice, not fire.  In the center of the lake, Satan is trapped up to his waist in ice and he claws and flaps his wings trying to get free, but the beating of his wings only makes the icy winds blow harder, the ice will never melt, thus ensuring he will never escape.  You see, in the Inferno Satan is the ultimate prisoner of Hell, not the ruler.

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Dante and Virgil escape by climbing down the ragged fur of Lucifer, passing through the center of the earth, emerging in the other hemisphere just before dawn on Easter Sunday, beneath a sky studded with stars.

I’m not a religious person, I label myself as agnostic and don’t necessarily believe there is a heaven or hell, but I always enjoyed the imagery of Dante’s poems.

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So here’s what’s been going on this week, my man is still in county custody.  It’s been 11 fucking days!  ICE was supposed to pick him up from the county jail within 48 hours of his arrest.  I hired a lawyer yesterday who seems to have experience advocating to ICE on behalf of immigrants.  It is super dangerous in there as he is being held in the felon ward because he’s there on a federal hold.  He has no charges but he’s in a high security ward, does this make sense to anyone else?  Because I’m at a loss.  Since I have a lawyer on ICE’s ass now I’m hoping that he will be moved within the next 48 hours, but if he’s not our next step is to look into filing a writ of Habeas corpus (if you don’t remember from HS government class, that’s protection from unlawful detention).

Unfortunately I learned that we probably won’t be able to make our own travel arrangements if they choose to keep him in ICE custody through the deportation process.  However they have a maximum of three months to deport him otherwise they have to let him go.  Also, once they finally have him in ICE custody the lawyer can go to the ICE judge and file a motion to have grant him supervised release (kinda like getting out on probation) where you have to check in daily, and then we could make our own travel arrangements.  Everything is a huge maybe right now.  I’ve been staying pretty strong so far, but today I was falling apart.  Part of my frustration was the general lack of answers, part of it was lack of sleep, and the other part was an asshole creditor that was harassing me by phone today while I was trying to take a nap.  He called me back three times yelling at me after I hung up on him.  This company trying to collect from me for a few months and is breaking all kinds of laws, but I think that’s a rant I’ll save for another post.

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Update du jour…

Okay so ICE admited to our attorney that they fucked up, so they went and picked him up today from the county jail.  We lobbied for release but ICE has said no for now and has moved him to a facility half way to Mexico.  I’m trying to figure out when I can drive the three hours to go see him, possibly tomorrow, I’m not sure yet.  Hoping for more news tomorrow.