Since March of 2008, we know of 261 instances of raids, primarily targeted against the Latino community, affecting hundreds of individuals and families. Seven children have been placed in foster care, and at least a third of the cases involve children being separated from their parents.
Raids have primarily taken place in people’s private residences at all hours of the day and night, often in the wee hours of the morning. They have also included racial profiling in automobiles and detaining drivers who do not show evidence of documentation. While most raids have targeted the Latino community, they have included nationals from other countries. Raids have been assisted by local police departments from Pittsfield Township, Ann Arbor City, the Washtenaw County Sheriff Dept. and the Michigan State Police. Some raids have targeted local businesses.
We have first-hand reports that ICE officials and other police have unlawfully and aggressively entered private residences without legal warrants, tricked residents into opening their doors, used violence and threats in detaining people including beating them down to the ground, hand-cuffing and pointing guns at them, terrorized young children by attacking their parents in front of them, separated families, yelled at and verbally abused people, stolen identification, ransacked and damaged peoples’ property, and used excessive intimidation. In one instance we witnessed the blood left on the floor after a detainment. Not all raids include this level of overt brutality. Once detained, immigrants are transferred rapidly and frequently, cannot be found or contacted; are denied rights to clean clothing, money, healthcare, or access to legal assistance.