97 people detained after ICE raid at TN meat packing facility; 3 - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

97 people detained after ICE raid at TN meat packing facility; 32 released

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(Editor's note--- we've translated part of this story into Spanish below.)

MORRISTOWN, TN (WBIR) - The majority of people detained Thursday during an ICE raid are reportedly on their way to a detention center to eventually face deportation proceedings, according to a statewide coalition working to secure legal representation for those detained Thursday.

Families of people detained by ICE Thursday continued to wait to learn what will happen to their loved ones Friday morning.

ICE said Homeland Security investigators encountered 97 people during the raid who were subject to removal from the U.S. Of those, 54 were put into detention, 32 were released from custody, 10 were arrested on federal criminal charges, and one was arrested on state charges.

According to Stephanie Teatro, the co-director of the Tennessee Immigrant and Refugee Rights Coalition, the majority of people detained yesterday are reportedly on their way to a regional detention facility in Louisiana where they will eventually face deportation proceedings.

The exact number of people detained in yesterday's raid at a meatpacking plant in Grainger County Thursday is still unknown, but believed to be around 150 people. Teatro said 11 of the people detained were released Thursday night -- saying they had legal status to reside in the U.S. or young children to take care of.

For those who were taken to the detention facility, Teatro said her organization is working to find them legal representation and support for their families.

"Hundreds of families have been devastated here in this area," she said. "We've been overwhelmed with people who want to help. We're hoping to coordinate volunteer services, as well."

Teatro said the raid sent a "wave of fear" across the community, saying its impact will likely last for many months to years.

The TIRRC said outside immediate legal representation, it's working to partner with local businesses and schools in the area to coordinate support and help for families.

Lawyers and translators have been at St. Patrick's Catholic Church Friday to help people understand their rights, and provide guidance on what they can do going forward.

For those that were released Thursday night, a bus was on standby to take them from the Armory to the church. The Armory is across the street from Russellville Elementary. The ride from the Armory to the church is roughly 12 minutes.

Read more at WBIR's website.


PREVIOUS STORY: Dozens of people gathered outside the National Guard Armory in Morristown after federal agents executed a search warrant looking for people who may be in the country illegally.

A Channel 10 reporter was given a written statement by an ICE agent outside the armory, located on East Andrew Johnson Highway in Morristown.

The statement said the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's Homeland Security Investigations, Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation Division, and the Tennessee Highway Patrol executed a federal criminal search warrant Thursday. It did not say where the warrant was served, but a local pastor told 10News it was Southeastern Provision in Grainger County.

According to the statement, Homeland Security Investigations encountered individuals who may be subject to removal from the United States. If families need more information on specific individuals, it can be found on ICE's detainee locator online.

"Those individuals who are determined to be subject to removal will be administratively arrested and placed in removal proceedings, we cannot release specifics on the arrests," according to the statement provided by ICE.

Veronica Galvan, a leader in the local church community, said she has talked to several families who had been impacted, and up to 150 people may have been taken to the to be questioned by authorities. She told 10News that she had seen only 11 people come out so far.

Hamblen County school officials said they had several children that were impacted by Thursday’s events.

Superintendent Dr. Jeff Perry told 10News that some staff had to stay late to ensure that students got home safely or were picked up by a trusted adult, and bus drivers were instructed to make sure someone was home before they dropped them off. Dr. Perry said that all of the children involved are now safe with a family member or friend.

Read more at WBIR's website.


En español

Varias personas están reunidas en frente de la guardia nacional, situada en East Andrew Johnson Highway en Morristown.

Esto es parte de una investigación federal en el estado de Tennessee.

Verónica Galvan, una líder de una iglesia, nos cuenta que casi 150 personas están detenidas en este momento.

Varias agencias federales incluyendo a las agencias de inmigración dicen que han ejecutado una orden de registro criminal, pero no nos han dado otros datos.

Un agente de ICE le dio una declaración escrita a uno de los reporteros de WBIR.

La declaración no dice en donde paso, pero un pastor local nos cuenta que fue en Southeastern Provision en el condado de Grainger.

De acuerdo con la declaración, Investigaciones de Seguridad Nacional (Homeland Security Investigations) encontraron a individuales que pueden ser removidos de los estados unidos. Si una familia necesita información sobre una persona en particular pueden visitar esta página de web.

En este momento los familiares de las personas detenidas están esperando en el gimnasio de Russelville Elementary.

El superintendente en el condado de Hamblen dice que muchos profesores se tuvieron que quedar tarde porque no había nadie en la casa para recibir a los estudiantes.

En este momento, WBIR esta trabajando para obtener más información sobre esta historia en desarrollo.

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