Political Correctness kills.
If you doubt it, ask the family of Kathryn Steinle.
Steinle was gunned down on July 2 while out for an evening stroll with her father along the San Francisco waterfront. They were walking near Pier 14–one of the city’s busiest tourist areas–when a pistol shot rang out.
Steinle, hit in the aorta, collapsed, crying, “Dad, help me, help me.”
Her father immediately gave her CPR before paramedics arrived and rushed Steinle to a hospital, where she died.
Steinle, 32, had worked for a medical technology company.
And her killer?
Francisco Sanchez, 45, has a history of seven felony convictions. He’s been deported to his native Mexico five times, most recently in 2009.
On March 26, agents of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) turned Sanchez over to San Francisco police on an outstanding warrant.
On March 27, a San Francisco Superior Court judge dismissed charges of possession and distribution of marijuana against Sanchez.
Sanchez was released on April 15.
ICE had issued a detainer for Sanchez in March, requesting to be notified if he would be released. But the detainer was not honored.
The reason? San Francisco has been a “sanctuary city” since 1989. Its officials–acting as though they govern a city-state instead of a small, tourism-dependent city–openly defy Federal immigration laws.
As a result, city and local money cannot be spent on cooperating with Federal immigration authorities.
According to Freya Horne, counsel for the San Francisco Sheriff’s Department, Federal detention orders are not a “legal basis” for holding someone.
So Sanchez was released on April 15–without anyone notifying ICE.
Seventy-eight days later, illegal alien Francisco Sanchez crossed paths with American citizen Kathryn Steinle–and murdered her.
San Francisco does not turn over illegal aliens to ICE unless there’s an active warrant for their arrest.
“It’s not legal to hold someone on a request to detain,” said Horne. “This is not just us. This is a widely adopted position.”
Widely adopted, that is, by cities acting in open defiance of Federal immigration laws and their enforcers.
San Francisco is just one of 31 “sanctuary cities”: Washington, D.C.; New York City; Los Angeles, Chicago; Santa Ana; San Diego; Salt Lake City; Phoenix; Dallas; Houston; Austin; Detroit; Jersey City; Minneapolis; Miami; Denver; Baltimore; Seattle; Portland, Oregon; New Haven, Connecticut; and Portland, Maine.
In pre-Civil War America, Southern states claimed they had a right to ignore, or “nullify,” any Federal law they disliked.
After raging from 1861 to 1865, and costing 620,000 casualties, the Civil War established the primacy of Federal law over that of states and cities.
Kathryn Steinle died because San Francisco authorities chose to defy that primacy.
But this is not the first time San Francisco officials have defied Federal immigration authorities–with brutal consequences for American-born citizens.
One of those officials–Kamala Harris–is now California’s Attorney General.
From 2004 to 2011, Harris served as San Francisco District Attorney. In total defiance of Federal immigration law, she set up a secret unit to keep even convicted illegal aliens out of prison–and in the United States.
Her program, Back on Track, trained them for jobs they could not legally hold.
One such alumnus was Alexander Izaguirre, an illegal alien who had pled guilty to selling cocaine. Four months later, in July, 2008, he assaulted Amanda Kiefer, a legal San Francisco resident.
Snatching her purse, he jumped into an SUV, then tried to run Kiefer down. Terrified, she leaped onto the hood and saw Izaguirre and the driver laughing.
The driver slammed on the brakes, sending Kiefer flying onto the pavement and fracturing her skull.
The program, Back on Track, became a centerpiece of Harris’ successful 2010 campaign for State Attorney General.
Until she was questioned by the Los Angeles Times about the Izaguirre case, Harris had never publicly admitted that the program included illegal aliens.
According to Harris:
- She first learned that illegal aliens were training for jobs only after Izaguirre was arrested for the Kiefer assault.
- It was “a flaw in the design” of the program to include illegal aliens.
- “I believe we fixed it,” she told the Times.
- After Izaguirre’s arrest, she never asked–or learned–how many illegal aliens were in Back on Track.
- When Harris learned that illegal aliens were enrolled, she allowed those who were following the rules to finish the program ahd have their criminal records expunged.
- It is not the duty of local law enforcement to enforce Federal immigration laws.
From 2005 to 2009, 113 admitted drug dealers graduated from Back on Track. Another 99 were kicked off the program for failing to meet its requirements. They were sentenced under their guilty pleas, the District Attorney’s office claimed.
Meanwhile, Amanda Kiefer left California.
Interviewed by the Times, she said she could not understand why San Francisco police and prosecutors would allow convicted illegal aliens back onto the street.
“If they’re committing crimes,” she said, “I think there’s something wrong that they’re not being deported.”