In preparation for an April 28 hearing before the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement Agency (ICE) released figures on how many criminal illegal aliens the agency caught and then released back into society during FY2015. Out of 119,772 arrests—approximately half the total arrests made in 2013 – ICE released 19,723 illegal aliens who amassed a total of 64,197 convictions.
Driving under the influence of alcohol made up the highest number of convictions with 12,307. Considering that one in three drunk drivers who are charged with a DUI/DWI will become repeat offenders, 3,700 of these criminal illegal aliens will likely end up in custody again for driving drunk.
With nearly 300,000 people injured in alcohol-related accidents every year, it is crucial that every available resource is used to get impaired drivers off the road. According to the Center for Disease Control, the average drunk driver will take the wheel 80 times while under the influence before being arrested. With almost 4,000 drunk drivers likely be arrested as repeat offenders, ICE is needlessly allowing convicted illegal aliens to operate a motor vehicle under the influence at least 295,000 times before being arrested (and likely released) again.
Furthermore, these troubling statistics only take into account the criminal illegal aliens caught and released by ICE officials. There are currently more than 300 cities, counties and states that have adopted illegal “sanctuary city” policies that forbid local law enforcement from cooperating with ICE officials when an illegal alien is arrested. According to ICE statistics covering an eight month period in 2014 and 2015, 17 percent of criminal illegal aliens arrested after being released from a sanctuary city were charged with using dangerous drugs and/or driving under the influence. Cooperation with federal officials would have ensured that these offenders stayed off the streets, protecting innocent drivers from needless property damage, injury and even death.
Proponents of the current administration’s policy of non-enforcement assure the American people that illegal immigration is harmless to law-abiding citizens, but statistics like these tell a different story. If public officials are serious about reducing the number of drunk drivers and making the streets safer, they will take this opportunity to get these dangerous illegal alien drivers off the highways. Failing to do so makes them complicit to the injuries and deaths that result from their inaction.