Morning Poll: Did ICE Help Kill Phoenix Officer Daryl Raetz, as Senator John McCain Asserts?

Categories: Morning Poll

john-mccain-snarling.jpg
U.S. Senator John McCain says ICE's "poor judgment" led to the death of Phoenix police officer Daryl Raetz.
U.S. Senator John McCain sent a letter to Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano on Thursday demanding more information about why the immigrant suspect in Phoenix cop's death was released from custody in 2012.

Jesus Cabrera-Molina owns the green SUV from Sunday's hit-and-run collision that claimed the life of Phoenix Officer Daryl Raetz on Sunday, but hasn't been charged for causing Raetz's death. Cabrera-Molina's an illegal immigrant who'd been previously deported, returned, committed an unidentified crime, then was released from ICE custody after posting bond, according to a statement on Sunday by the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement bureau.

In the letter to Napolitano, who oversees ICE operations, McCain asserts that Raetz was killed, at least in part, because of the "poor judgment of ICE officials."

See also - Flip-Flopping John McCain Is No Political Profile in Courage

McCain notes that Cabrera-Molina had been arrested on a DUI charge in 2009 and for providing liquor to a minor in 2009. He was deported in 2011 but returned to the United States and, for some reason, ended up in ICE custody. He was able to post a $5,000 bond that, according to ICE, was "granted by an immigration judge with the Department of Justice's Executive Office of Immigration Review."

McCain ties the released immigrant's suspected involvement in the homicide to the releasing of thousands of undocumented immigrants earlier this year by ICE, many of whom had criminal records. This type of crime was just what he'd been warning about since that mass release, McCain suggests.

The Republican senator and former presidential candidate wants to know if ICE shared information with the court about the suspect's prior criminal history before he was released, what led to his detention by ICE in 2012, what recommendations ICE made to Immigration Review about whether Cabrera-Molina was suitable for release, and whether ICE monitored his release in any way. The senator also wants to know why removal proceedings for an illegal immigrant with a criminal history have been "pending" for more than a year.

None of this can bring back Raetz, a 29-year-old officer with a wife and young daughter who'd worked for PPD for six years.

But the intersection of this tragedy and the nation's long-running debate on illegal immigration is ripe for exploitation by politicians and pundits, similar to the way the murder of Phoenix Officer Nick Erfle in 2007 became a symbol for potential change. Part of the debate, naturally, is to jump on the case of immigration officials who struggle to deal with millions of non-citizens and convoluted laws and procedures.

According to ICE's statement about Cabrera-Molina, the undocumented scofflaw "was ordered released from ICE custody in May 2012 after he posted the $5,000 bond granted by an immigration judge."
If true, then McCain's accusation of "poor judgment" was premature. Yet criticism of ICE, like that of CPS, the IRS and other frustrating government agencies, is never too far off the mark.

But even if it turns out that ICE should have kept in the suspect in custody and had him deported, that doesn't mean anything would have turned out differently.

Jerry Cobb, spokesman for the Maricopa County Attorney's Office, says speculation about such things falls into the realm of science-fiction.

Cobb made that statement in a different case: We had suggested in a February blog post that if County Attorney Bill Montgomery's office had thrown the book at arsonist and convicted felon Bryan Teague for recklessly shooting a gun at two guys even though he wasn't allowed to own a gun at all, a 5,220-acre wildfire on the Tonto National Forest that Teague caused by putting a 16-ounce propane tank in a campfire might have been averted.

Cobb told us that in Teague's case, "It is equally plausible that he would have committed the arson after serving an even longer prison term. Charging someone for a future crime is fine in the fictional world of "Minority Report," but it just doesn't work that way in real life."

Perhaps Cobb is right -- but we bet you won't hear Montgomery, a Republican, like McCain, or anyone else from his office making the same statement about Cabrera-Molina.

All the answers are most definitely not in yet, but we're curious what you think: Did ICE help kill Phoenix officer Daryl Raetz, like McCain suggests?

Here is your morning poll:



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44 comments
royalphoenix
royalphoenix

Posting a 5k bond, driving a suv, where does this guy work ?

yourproductsucks
yourproductsucks

In light of recent news, the real poll of the day whould relate to Holder and the DoJ's blatant attempts to thwart media's ability to do their job.  Is this reminiscent of hendershott's attack on PNT journalists?

Why is this topic receiving the cold shoulder from the PNT?

david_saint01
david_saint01 topcommenter

wow, a US Senator declaring guilt before a trial...thats some scary shit right there. 

valleynative
valleynative topcommenter

Responsibility isn't necessarily "all or nothing". 

Of course the driver is primarily responsible.  It's silly to have to even say that, but others bear indirect responsibility.

We deport criminals, not because we know absolutely that it will prevent them from committing crimes, but because it is a reasonable and lawful way to minimize the chances that they will commit crimes again in the United States.   ICE failed to use reasonable and lawful means to minimize the chances that this crime would happen, and so bears some of the responsibility.


Tommy_Collins
Tommy_Collins

It certainly seems the lame duck senator is using this to make noise against the Obama administration. I have to wonder why he didn't send a letter to the U.S. Attorney demanding an investigation of the local sheriff when it was revealed that MCSO ignored or failed to investigate sex related crimes throughout Maricopa County. 

I abhor the loss of a peace officer, but think the political usage of his death to gain attention is nothing short of disgusting.

yourproductsucks
yourproductsucks

Was an ICE agent in the drivers seat of the vehicle that struck Officer Raetz? 

responsibility lies completely on the shoulders of the driver of the vehicle that night.  No one else.

david_saint01
david_saint01 topcommenter

@yourproductsucks no, PNT never posted or wrote about classified intel and coerced them into doing so. Otherwise known as Espionage. PNT informed us that our rights were about to be violated. big difference.  Giving away our intelligence, especially regarding N Korea, was highly dangerous and i have to wonder A: why he thought he could get away with that. B: what was he trying to inform the public about? was it worth risking our national security just to get a "scoop"?! im all for free press, but these fox chodes think they can do whatever, whenever, just to fire up the GOP base. Plus, i have a hard time considering fox journalism. 

teknik
teknik topcommenter

you mean because 31 republicans demanded they investigate the leaks? prevosly the administration was accused of providing the leaks for the sake of campaigning. when the leaks are investigated foul is called.

when you bitch at someone no matter what they do, that's delosinal.

cry wolf much?

ray.stern
ray.stern moderator

I may do somethin' on that...

valleynative
valleynative topcommenter

@david_saint01  Reading that a U.S. Senator is "demanding more information" and twisting that to "declaring guilt"... that's some scary shit, too.


valleynative
valleynative topcommenter

@Tommy_Collins  I believe that McCain feels that any failure of a County Sheriff should be investigated by County and State authorities before involving the federal government.  I don't know that this was his thought process, but it certainly makes sense to me.

At this point in his career, I don't think McCain is particularly hungry for attention.  I think he might just feel, as many of his constituents do that ICE seriously screwed up.

valleynative
valleynative topcommenter

@yourproductsucks  The world really isn't black and white.  It's very rare that one person is "completely" responsible for anything.

Tommy_Collins
Tommy_Collins

@valleynative @Tommy_Collins You could be very correct with regard to the senator's motive. Not sure about that. However, he could (and in my opinion SHOULD) have enlisted the U.S. Attorney to investigate the local sheriff. You may recall that the county attorney is Montgomery and the state attorney general is Horne, both of whom owe their elections to the local sheriff. That is reality. That said, there would be significant bias and conflict of interest for any investigation. A bit like the local sheriff sending the Munnell memo to Babeu for his 'investigation', if you will.

yourproductsucks
yourproductsucks

@valleynative We all have the ability to choose.  The driver of this vehicle chose to drive and chose to flee the scene of an accident.  If it's th e same guy, he also chose to drive while impaired at least one other time and also chose to enter and remain in the country illegally.  He bears the responsibility.  Too much effort is given in identifying litigeous opportunities in all situations. 

Is there another who bears responsibility to Jody Arias killing Sean Alexander in the manner she did?  When you act alone, you alone are responsible.

yourproductsucks
yourproductsucks

@david_saint01 He wasn't charged with anything...so he did get away with it.  It is eerily similiar to the AP subpoenas...The Government is overreaching here.

No one was injured or killed because of the "leaked" information.  Almost all stories with any salt come from "anonymous" sources not allowed to officially give out information.

The media serves a purpose.  Freedom of the Press is nothing to scoff at.  These intrusions by the government are intrusions of this Constitutionally protected right. 

david_saint01
david_saint01 topcommenter

@yourproductsucks @david_saint01 i dont care who it is..it could have been Larry King and i wouldnt feel sorry for him. Journalists know better than to try and squeeze classified intel out of Govt employees, especially intel that could show a possible response from them (and by proxy, us). Law is the law. Period. Now, am i happy about the manner in which they went about it? NO. and you are right, it is a slippery slope. But as i said, reporters should know better and quite frankly he just thumbed his nose at the law and thought he could get away with it..

teknik
teknik topcommenter

McCain declaring guilt, not the DoJ

valleynative
valleynative topcommenter

@david_saint01 Yes, particularly the "comprehension" part.  "has not been charged in the crime".  That's not declaring guilt.  That's declaring that his guilt or innocence should be established through the judicial system.

The reporters interpretive statement that McCain makes "an assertion" does not mean that McCain has made any declaration of guilt.  We don't know what he actually said, but even so, having looked at the facts he would have every right to declare that he believes that Cabrera-Molina shares blame as the owner of the vehicle, and that ICE shares blame indirectly.  Every person has the right to say that they believe somebody shares blame.  That's not the same as officially declaring guilt.

david_saint01
david_saint01 topcommenter

@valleynative @david_saint01 this is from KTAR: 

"McCain sent a letter to DHS head Janet Napolitano demanding to know why Cabrera-Molina has not been charged in the crime"

And even reading this article, "McCain asserts that Raetz was killed, at least in part, because of the "poor judgment of ICE officials." reading and comprehension together are so nice arent they

valleynative
valleynative topcommenter

@david_saint01 @valleynative  Read the article.  Count the number if times it says that McCain "...wants to know..."  He' believes that they bear responsibility, but he certainly hasn't declared "guilt".

valleynative
valleynative topcommenter

@JohnQ.Public @valleynative  What part of the design do you think makes them "to kill" rather than to "neutralize"?   I can't seem to find it on mine.


Besides, the point is that they're not designed for crime so if they're used for that unintended purpose, the manufactuerer is not to blame.  Not all killing is unlawful.


JohnQ.Public
JohnQ.Public

@valleynative And the vast majority of guns are designed to kill - make no mistake about.  There are some that aren't, like highly specialized competitve marksmanship firearms, but guns are fundamentally designed to kill.

JohnQ.Public
JohnQ.Public

@valleynative Right, just like an immigration judge releasing an illegal immigrant on bail pending trial doesn't create any blame when the illegal immigrant misuses his freedom to murder a cop, as this one did.  You are being incredibly discriminatory in how you apportion "degrees of responsibility" depending on the subject matter at hand and who you wish to impugn or defend.

valleynative
valleynative topcommenter

@JohnQ.Public Google "handgun hunting'.  I see a lot of gun ads.  Almost certainly more than you, and I don't believe I have EVER seen a mention of lethality.

Accuracy, capacity, comfortable grip, etc, but never lethality.   Ammunition manufacturers will sometimes advertise their "stopping power", but that's generally a measure of how much energy is transferred to the target.  The goal when shooting for defense is not lethality, but to put the attacker on the ground, incapacitated.

Advertising those factors doesn't create any blame when those same features are misused.  Guns are not manufactured to commit murder, or even to kill people.  They're created for sports shooting and for protection.  Protection doesn't necessitate ever even firing the gun let alone killing anybody.  Just the potential to put the criminal on the ground.

JohnQ.Public
JohnQ.Public

@valleynative Nicely rationalized.  I doubt that you'd take a handgun out hunting, yet handgun advertising is routinely based on lethality.   When a chainsaw chops off an arm the chain saw hasn't fulfilled the purpose for which is was designed.  When a gun kills someone it has fulfilled the purpose for which it was designed - big difference.

JohnQ.Public
JohnQ.Public

@valleynative @yourproductsucks Formal determination is made by a judge or magistrate judge and if a finding of incompetence is made, then the case is monitored through the Probate and Mental Health Division of Superior Court .

valleynative
valleynative topcommenter

@JohnQ.Public @valleynative  Yes, still immeasurably tiny.  Chain saw manufacturers advertise how well they cut.  Are they responsible when somebody uses them to cut a person instead of a tree branch?   Gun manufacturers sell guns for sports and for defense, not for murder.  When you see somebody advertising how well their handgun works in armed robbery you'll have a point.

JohnQ.Public
JohnQ.Public

@valleynative Degree of responsibility is not hard to understand - its that the gun industry has forever denied ALL responsibility for any use of a firearm.  Is that "degree of responsibility still "immeasurably tiny" when gun and ammo manufacturers base their advertising around lethality and stopping power?  Is it still "immeasurably tiny" when a shooter selects a specific gun or ammo because of the manufacturers claim that it is more lethal than other guns and ammo?  Is it still "immeasurably tiny" when a gun and ammo manufacturers continue to invest in R&D to make guns even more lethal next year than they were last year.  These are interesting concepts and I  raise them in light of your argument, which you've raised before, about degrees of responsibility but also your often frequent defense of the gun industry and gun rights.  I'd argue that the shooter almost always retains 100% responsibility, if not a full 100% responsibility for the shooting, so don't confuse this with an argument against gun rights or gun ownership or in favor of gun control.

valleynative
valleynative topcommenter

@yourproductsucks When Pima Community College decided that Loughner was too dangerous to be allowed on their campus, the decision was made by administrators, not health care professionals.  For the record though.   The formal determination is made during the psychiatric hold that is triggered by a report filed by responsible citizens, not before.

JohnQ.Public
JohnQ.Public

@yourproductsucks Law enforcement is not a "covered entity" as defined under HIPAA (a heatlh care provider, a heatlh care payor or an electronic clearinghouse) and therefore is not subject to its restrictions.  There may be reasons that law enforcement is restricted from releasing medical info, but I strongly doubt that HIPAA is one of them.

yourproductsucks
yourproductsucks

@valleynative HIPPA reaches out much further than in health care fields.  Law Enforcement, for example, are prohibited from releasing medical information of another due to HIPPA.

It's simple minded, however, to think that a health care professional wouldn't be involved in a school's determination that one is a danger to themselves or others...It won't be the English professor who makes the official ruling on ones aptitude or propencity for violence.

valleynative
valleynative topcommenter

@JohnQ.Public  Why is "degree of responsibility" such a difficult concept?  Yes, all of those people share some immeasurably tiny theoretical shred of blame, along with anybody who may have ever stopped the driver from stepping out into traffic as a child.

The issue is "degree of responsibility". 

ICE is specifically charged with deporting dangerous illegals.  If they fail at that charged task, they bear a degree of responsibility that can't be ignored.

JohnQ.Public
JohnQ.Public

@valleynative By your logic, the gun manufacturer, the ammunition manufacturer and the seller are all partially to blame in every gun death.  The gun manufacturer designed and manufactured a gun capable of killing - if the gun couldn't there would have been no death.  The ammo manufacturer produced ammo with enough of a load to be able to generate the force to cause the injuries to the victim that resulted in death - if the ammo didn't cause such serious injury there would have been no death.  The gun seller sold the gun to the shooter (or to the person who started the chain of transactions that put it in the hands of the shooter) - if the seller didn't sell the gun there would have been no death.  By your logic, everyone in the chain the produce and sold the gun and ammo are partially responsible for every gun death.  

Just to be clear, I think that the shooter deserves the blame, but by your logic we should be blaming the gun manufacturer, the ammo manufacturer and the seller too.

valleynative
valleynative topcommenter

@yourproductsucks  

Noted.

Nothing prevents parents or school administrators from reporting a person as being, in their opinion, a danger to self or others.  That only applies to health care professionals, and they are authorized to place such a person on a psychiatric hold for evaluation.


yourproductsucks
yourproductsucks

@valleynative Then I am simple minded. 

fyi- Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 assures information about the Jared Loughner's of the world will be kept secret.

valleynative
valleynative topcommenter

@yourproductsucks  Nope.  That's too simple minded.

The actor is certainly very predominantly to blame, but there are almost always others who either acted or failed to act.

These others rarely bear enough responsibility to justify litigation, let alone prosecution, but we can't deny that they exist.

I didn't pay attention, and it might not have been reported, but the testimony given to the jury to help them to decide about the death penalty would have been primarily a list of people who had treated Arias badly during her life, in hopes of shedding some small amount of blame onto them.

A better example might be Loughner, in which case we can see that some amount of blame falls to his parents and to school administrators for failing to report his dangerous insanity.


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