CENTENNIAL, Colo. -- Violent criminals who can’t read.
Is that what ICE agents really think of those who protest against that agency’s family separation practices?
FOX31 Problem Solvers reported from a protest on August 2 outside the Immigration and Customs Enforcement center in Centennial.
Eight people were reportedly arrested for trespassing or blocking the entrance to the ICE facility.
Afterward, the FOX31 investigative team requested and started collecting police body camera footage from that day. We were surprised by the lack of footage.
Of the dozens of law enforcement personnel on scene, only a few had cameras recording.
However, we did discover some candid moments caught on camera between an Arapahoe County Sheriff's Office deputy and man who identified himself as an ICE agent.
On the outskirts of a developing immigration enforcement protest, an Arapahoe County traffic cop’s body camera was triggered by an ICE agent’s boisterous voice. On camera, he started ranting about having to park “out back” and sharing his thoughts about protesters.
He started by telling other law enforcement that “Antifa is supposed to show up so violence will be going.”
Antifa is a group of mostly left-wing militant protesters with a reputation of violent tactics.
Based on FOX31 reporter observations, there were no violent activities or protesters which appeared to be involved in violence near the ICE facility.
“Just to listen to these guys talk! ‘They’re out for profit. They separate these families!’ There's not a single kid separated right now. They’ve all been reunited. (shrugs) So. OK. Protest over!” the ICE agent is heard telling the deputy.
The Arapahoe County deputy did not appear to engage in the several-minute long dialog, but only recorded and listened.
The ICE agent, whom the agency refused to identify, raged on and on with unguarded abandon.
“I would love to see you guys come out here and get them busted for sh****** and pissing in the streets and the ditches because, Jesus, it’s a mess,” he stated.
“I’m trying to get us some brochures to hand out to the hippies,” the agent added. “But, they won’t, they’ll just wipe their a** with it.”
He laughs when an unidentified voice off-camera said, “That requires reading!”
“These (inaudible) aren’t leaving. They’ve been here since Sunday, So. Hopefully, they have to go back to jobs or probation or where ever they go,” stated the ICE agent.
Matt Wozniak attended the August ICE protest and remembers the agent caught on camera saying disparaging things about his peaceful group.
“It’s reflective of the attitude of ICE and prejudice in which they are carrying out their mission or agenda,” Wozniak told FOX31 after watching our recording of the police exchange. “It’s representative of what that organization is and why we should abolish it.”
Arturo Jimenez has spent 20 years as an attorney representing families in immigration cases. He hopes this ICE agent's unfiltered comments are not reflective of the rest of the agency’s employees.
“What type of dialog are we looking to have?” Jimenez asked FOX31. “We can continue the rhetoric around immigration and use those kind of words, like violent and criminal, and not able to read, uneducated and kind of perpetuate that, but when you have people out and excising their First Amendment rights, we have to study that and say we really can’t talk about people that way.”
FOX31 Problem Solvers sent a picture of the agent in question and asked ICE to identify him, along with his rank and salary. We also offered, in advance of the publication of this article, to discuss the specific comments made by the reported agent.
That agency emailed back a short statement, “We will not be accommodating your request.”
The video material from Arapahoe County was edited by that police agency before it arrived to FOX31. We asked why and then received a list of redactions.
The reasons ranged from a “deputy talking about tactical positions” to the “visual redaction of a plainclothes ICE agent who was undercover in the crowd.”AlertMe