In the following letter, TCC members encourage the Texas Congressional Delegation to enact Kate’s Law. Under the proposed law, previously deported individuals who return illegally to the United States would be subject to mandatory jail terms of five years upon conviction of an offense. The legislation is named for Kate Steinle, a young woman who was murdered by an illegal alien in San Francisco with multiple prior convictions and five previous deportations:
July 30, 2015
We write to urge you to support and advance H.R. 3011, the “Establishing Mandatory Minimums for Illegal Reentry Act of 2015” or “Kate’s Law”. As you know, the legislation is named for Kate Steinle, a young woman who was murdered by an illegal alien in San Francisco who had multiple prior felony convictions and five previous deportations.
Under the proposed law, previously deported individuals who return illegally to the United States would be subject to mandatory jail terms of five years upon conviction of an offense. A recent Washington Post story highlighted three recent cases where illegal aliens with prior felony convictions, including one for armed robbery, received jail terms of just two years, 30 months, and 21 months, respectively. Under Kate’s Law, these aliens would have received mandatory sentences of at least five years.
Juan Francisco Lopez Sanchez, the alien who admitted shooting and killing Kate Steinle, had at least 20 prior arrests on U.S. soil and had served multiple prison sentences for various crimes, including felony narcotics manufacturing, possession of heroin, illegal entry into the United States, and a series of probation violations. In May 2011 he was sentenced to 48 months in federal prison for illegal reentry, and was released into the custody of the San Francisco sheriff’s department in April 2015. The sheriff’s department in turn released Lopez Sanchez without notifying U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), despite the federal agency having requested such notification. At minimum, a mandatory five year sentence in May 2011 would have saved Kate Steinle’s life.
Together with H.R. 3009, the “Enforce the Law for Sanctuary Cities Act”, which would penalize cities like San Francisco that do not enforce federal immigration law, Kate’s Law is a long overdue reform to address the problem of illegal aliens who commit serious crimes in the United States. This is critical for our nation and also for the State of Texas, where crimes committed by illegal aliens have become a significant problem.
According to the latest data from the Texas Department of Public Safety, since June 2011, more than 20,000 illegal aliens have been convicted of assaultive offenses (including 2,000 sexual assaults), more than 25,000 for drug offenses, 344 for homicide, and more than 16,000 for robbery or theft. In total, illegal aliens have been convicted of offenses in Texas at the rate of 130 per day (that’s five offenses per hour or one every twelve minutes) since June 2011. This is why it is time for the federal government to take this criminality seriously by ending sanctuary cities and enacting Kate’s Law to ensure five year minimum sentences for aliens who illegally reenter the United States.
We urge you to support Kate’s Law and urge you to do all you can to advance this legislation.
Texas Conservative Coalition