Protests erupted Thursday in Arizona after Guadalupe García de Rayos, a 35-year-old wife and mother of two U.S.-born children, was deported to Mexico after a routine meeting Wednesday with immigration officials. Rayos entered the U.S. illegally with her parents at age 14 and has been required to check in biannually with the federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement office in Phoenix after she was caught in 2008 using a fake Social Security number to obtain employment.
Despite Rayos' compliance with the regular meetings without incident, immigration agents arrested and deported her Wednesday, citing a policy finalized in 2013 under the Obama administration that prioritized the deportation of individuals who posed a threat or who had been charged with a felony or a series of misdemeanor crimes.
In 2013, Rayos was permitted to stay in the U.S. even after a judge issued a deportation order because she was deemed not to be a threat; her arrest happened less than a month after President Trump expanded the definition of "criminal alien" in an executive order.
At least seven protesters were arrested trying to prevent Rayos from being deported. Catch a glimpse of the protests and hear statements from Rayos' daughter and husband below. Becca Stanek