Newton Holds Vigil for Neighbor Facing Deportation Threat - NECN

Newton Holds Vigil for Neighbor Facing Deportation Threat

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Newton Holds Vigil for Father Facing Deportation

    The father of two is pleading to stay so he can care for his sick wife.

    (Published Wednesday, Aug. 1, 2018)

    For Rigoberto Mendez, as the time ticks closer to mid-August, he can't help but get more, and more nervous.

    "We have a broken heart, we have a broken heart," Mendez said Wednesday.

    Mendez and his family joined by dozens Wednesday night in Newton for a rally held outside the school where Mendez's youngest son attends. Many in the crowd carrying signs of support, other signing letters to be sent to elected officials in support of Mendez.

    "I'm so proud of my town, without them, it isn't easy," Mendez said.

    All this comes as Mendez faces the growing reality he could be sent back to his native Guatemala.

    In a statement, ICE said Mendez has a, "Active final order of removal issued by an immigration judge in 2009."

    A few weeks ago, Mendez was fitted a GPS ankle bracelet.

    Mendez's attorney says he is hoping ICE will have some compassion since Mendez's wife is currently battling brain cancer, and his eldest son was just accepted to college, the first member of his entire family to do so.

    "He had his day in court, and it didn't work out, but there are special circumstances here that we be believe warrants discretion," Victor Maldonado, Mendez's attorney, said at the rally.

    Maldonado says Mendez must show up at an ICE hearing in Mid-August with proof he has a plane ticket to Guatemala.

    "My wish is to continue here, like, the way I have been here and take care of my family as always," Mendez said.

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