Tucson Man Detained Thanks to "Papers Please" Provision of SB 1070; ACLU on the Case
|Nevele Otseog via Flickr|
A 23-year-old man was detained by South Tucson police this summer, and held for more than five hours so he could be questioned about his immigration status, according to the American Civil Liberties Union of Arizona.
The ACLU is getting involved in the case, as a challenge to section 2(b) of Senate Bill 1070, also known as the "papers please" provision.
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"Alex [Valenzuela], 23, was a passenger in a parked car on July 13 when South Tucson police officers detained him in order to question him about his citizenship," the ACLU of Arizona announced today. "Even though he provided multiple forms of identification and had not committed any crime, the officers unlawfully arrested and drove Alex to Border Patrol's Tucson Sector headquarters where he was detained for an additional five hours."
Section 2(b) of SB 1070 requires police to try to determine a person's immigration status if "reasonable suspicion exists that the person is an alien who is unlawfully present in the United States."
Last year, the U.S. Supreme Court invalidated multiple sections of SB 1070, but said it was "improper" for the lower court to enjoin section 2(b) "before the state courts had an opportunity to construe it and without some showing that enforcement of the provision in fact conflicts with federal immigration law and its objectives."
Since the section was challenged on the basis that it conflicts with federal immigration law, it could still be challenged on other grounds.
"This opinion does not foreclose other preemption and constitutional challenges to the law as interpreted and applied after it goes into effect," Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote.
Now, a bit more than a year after the "papers please" provision went into effect, the ACLU alleges Valenzuela's constitutional rights to freedom from unreasonable seizures and equal protection of the law were violated.