Illegal immigrant attempts to kidnap Alabamians as border policy debate heats up
Last week, an illegal immigrant from Guatemala tried to violently kidnap a woman at a local park and lure two teenage girls into his car at a school bus stop in Jasper, leading to charges of second degree attempted kidnapping and enticing a child.
Walker County Sheriff Jim Underwood on Friday said 22-year-old Bernardo Castro-Gabriel was being held on a $1 million, all-cash bond. U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has placed an immigration hold on the Guatemala-native, but the Jasper Police Department will request for their case to be adjudicated before any immigration action takes place.
Jasper Police Chief J.C. Poe explained that the crime was brazen and in broad daylight. He reported that Castro-Gabriel dragged the park victim by her hair and was inches from successfully forcing her into his vehicle. Fortunately, the woman was able to struggle and break away before someone called 9-11.
“We’re very fortunate that this lady was able to break free from her assailant. I’m positive if she had not have been we would have a tragedy on our hands this morning,” Poe told ABC 33/40.
This came the same week that University of Iowa student Mollie Tibbetts was found dead after the confessed-murderer, himself reportedly an illegal immigrant, led authorities to her body.
Rep. Mo Brooks (R-Huntsville) strongly criticized liberal immigration policies after Tibbetts’ murder was discovered and he doubled down on his calls for stronger border laws after this incident struck home in Alabama.
“It is tragic and infuriating that American citizens in Jasper, Alabama have been the victims of illegal alien crime only days after Mollie Tibbetts was brutally murdered in Iowa,” Brooks said in a press release. “The attempted kidnap of American citizens by an illegal alien from Guatemala highlights our country’s desperate need for the border wall and stronger border enforcement.”
He continued, “Far too many Americans have suffered at the hands of illegal aliens who never should have been here. These crimes are entirely avoidable with stronger border enforcement, but instead of working to keep Americans safe by eliminating illegal immigration Democrats and open borders advocates shamefully seek to abolish ICE and obstruct Republican attempts to stop the flow of illegal aliens across our border. The callousness displayed by Democrats in light of these horrific crimes against American citizens is appalling and shows Democrats value illegal aliens above American citizens.”
“Kate’s Law,” a bill that would enhance penalties for convicted and deported criminals who reenter the United States illegally, continues to be blocked from passing by Senate Democrats. The bill, named after Kate Steinle (who was infamously killed in 2015 by an illegal immigrant who had seven felony convictions and been deported five times), passed the House in June 2017.
“Democrats and open borders advocates need to wake up to the number of casualties we have suffered as a consequence of our porous borders,” Brooks concluded. “The question for Democrats and open borders advocates is, how many Americans must be victimized before you get out of the way and let those of us who care about American citizens secure our border?”
Yet another example of why we must secure our border and enforce our nation’s immigration laws. https://t.co/VGtTAtBiY5
— Rep. Bradley Byrne (@RepByrne) August 24, 2018
Brooks also condemned Democratic obstruction on immigration issues last week and said that Tibbetts would be alive if the nation had stronger border security and immigration laws.
“Mollie Tibbetts would be alive today but for illegal aliens and Democrat insistence on open borders and amnesty,” Brooks said. “Mollie Tibbetts’ confessed illegal alien murderer never should have been in America and Mollie Tibbetts would be alive today if he wasn’t.”
In the Alabama case, local authorities in Jasper struggled to identify Castro-Gabriel after the arrest, as he also went by the name Omar Sanchez. Federal immigration authorities had to help make the true identification.
Sheriff Underwood said the immigrant was previously a person of interest in the 2015 disappearance of a 12-year-old girl from a Walker County trailer park. The girl was later found wandering a street in Arizona.
“He more than likely was connected to that case but we couldn’t prove it at that time,” Underwood outlined.
He added, “We suspected it may have been a human trafficking case and suspected he was the one who transported her to Arizona.”
Earlier this summer, the Yellowhammer State was rocked by the brutal murder of a special needs girl who was killed by affiliates of a Mexican drug cartel.
Sean Ross is a staff writer for Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @sean_yhn