Confirmed: Alleged Carjacker Shot by Memphis Police Is an Illegal Alien

June 4, 2023 Peter D'Abrosca

United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) confirmed for The Tennessee Star that the man arrested for a litany of crimes in Memphis last week was an illegal alien.

“ICE issued an immigration detainer on May 31 for Honduran national Jairo Ponce, 29, following his arrest by the Memphis Police Department on charges of aggravated robbery, carjacking, aggravated assault on a first responder, employment of a firearm during the commission of a dangerous felony and evading arrest,” an ICE spokesperson told The Star Friday. “On an unknown date and location, Ponce entered the United States without being admitted or paroled by an immigration official.”

The crimes allegedly committed by Ponce (pictured above) occurred Tuesday, according to the Memphis Police Department (MPD), starting with a reported robbery that led to a police chase and a shootout.

“On Tuesday, May 30, 2023, at approximately 2:44 p.m., Officers responded to a Robbery of an Individual in the 700 block of Eastern Drive. Officers were advised that while the victims were doing yard work when they observed a male Hispanic at their vehicle who was armed with two weapons. The suspect got into the vehicle as the victims approached. He pointed guns at them and demanded they get away from him,” MPD said on Facebook.

“The suspect fled in the victim’s vehicle west on Tutwiler Avenue. Officers received information that the suspect, a male Hispanic, and the stolen vehicle were still in the area.

Officers located the stolen vehicle and pursued the robbery suspect,” the police department said. “The suspect bailed out of the vehicle in the 800 block of Eastern Drive and fired a shot at an officer. The officer returned fire, striking the suspect once. Responding officers rendered medical aid and took the suspect into custody. The suspect was transported to Regional One Hospital in non-critical condition.”

ICE explained its detainer process to The Star:

As part of its mission to identify and arrest removable noncitizens, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) lodges immigration detainers against noncitizens who have been arrested for criminal activity and taken into custody by state or local law enforcement. An immigration detainer is a request from ICE to state or local law enforcement agencies to notify ICE as early as possible before a removable noncitizen is released from their custody. Detainers request that state or local law enforcement agencies maintain custody of the noncitizen for a period not to exceed 48 hours beyond the time the individual would otherwise be released, allowing ERO to assume custody for removal purposes in accordance with federal law.

Detainers are a critical public safety tool because they focus enforcement resources on removable noncitizens who have been arrested for criminal activity. Detainers increase the safety of all parties involved – ERO personnel, law enforcement officials, the removable noncitizens, and the public – by allowing an arrest to be made in a secure and controlled custodial setting as opposed to at-large within the community. Since detainers result in the direct transfer of a noncitizen from state or local custody to ERO custody, they also minimize the potential that an individual will reoffend. Additionally, detainers conserve scarce government resources by allowing ERO to take criminal noncitizens into custody directly rather than expending resources locating these individuals at-large.

Meanwhile, the crisis at the southern border has been described as “the worst in American history.”

According to the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR), at least 5.5 million illegal aliens have entered the United States under the Biden administration.

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Pete D’Abrosca is a reporter at The Tennessee Star and The Star News Network. Follow Pete on Twitter.
Background Photo “Courtroom” by Carol M. Highsmith.