A 10-year-old girl with cerebral palsy has been detained by federal immigration authorities in Texas after she passed through a Border Patrol checkpoint on her way to a hospital to undergo emergency gall bladder surgery.
The girl, Rosamaria Hernandez, who was brought over the border illegally to live in Laredo, Tex., when she was three months old, was being transferred from a medical center in Laredo to a hospital in Corpus Christi around 2 a.m. on Tuesday when Border Patrol agents stopped the ambulance she was riding in, her family said. The agents allowed her to continue to Driscoll Children’s Hospital, the family said, but followed the ambulance the rest of the way there, then waited outside her room until she was released from the hospital.
By Wednesday evening, according to family members and advocates involved in her case, immigration agents had taken her to a facility in San Antonio where migrant children who arrive alone in the United States from Central America are usually held, even though her parents, who both lack legal status, live 150 miles away in Laredo.
Her placement there highlighted the unusual circumstances of her case: The federal government maintains detention centers for adult immigrants it plans to deport, facilities for families who arrive at the border together and shelters for children who come by themselves, known as unaccompanied minors. But it is rare, if not unheard-of, for a child already living in the United States to be arrested — particularly one with a serious medical condition.
This is who Trump chooses to "protect" America from: 10-year-old sick kids who came to the country as newborns but have to be deported because screw those lazy Mexicans, right?
Rosamaria’s cousin, Aurora Cantu, a United States citizen who was riding with her in the ambulance and accompanied her to the hospital, told Rosamaria’s mother and others working on the case that the agents had at first tried to persuade the family to agree to have the girl transferred to a Mexican hospital, pressing the family to sign a voluntary departure form for her. They declined to do so. The entire time Rosamaria was in surgery and then in recovery, several armed Border Patrol agents stood outside her hospital room, the family said.
Her mother, Felipa de la Cruz, 39, said in an interview that her family had moved to Texas from Nuevo Laredo, the city in Mexico just across the border from Laredo, when her daughter was still an infant, hoping to get better treatment for her cerebral palsy.
They had not been able to afford her therapies in Mexico, she said, but in Texas, Medicaid paid for her daughter’s treatment, which included home visits from therapists.
“I’m a mother. All I wanted was for her to get the surgery that she needed,” Ms. de la Cruz said. “It never crossed my mind that any of what is happening right now could happen. When you’re a mother, all you care about is your child.”
That's the issue. We have to protect the American taxpayer from saving the life of a child.