Posted by: Ann Corcoran | April 25, 2011

Washington County, MD is now officially in “Secure Communities” program

The Herald Mail is reporting this morning that Washington County, one of the last counties in Maryland to join the federal program that helps identify illegal aliens and get them removed from the country, is in.   We reported the other day that it was likely in the program as some in the sanctuary county— Montgomery County—had a cow over the feds pushing them to get on board.   I suspect Washington County reluctantly joined (or else they would have done it a lot sooner).

Readers may recall we have been pushing for all three of the FEDERALLY APPROVED AND LEGAL programs to control immigration.  So, one down and two to go.  Only Frederick County has all three (and their illegal alien population is declining!).

Hagerstown Herald Mail:

Fingerprints of people booked into the Washington County Detention Center will be checked automatically against federal immigration law enforcement records under a new system implemented this month by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

The program, known as “Secure Communities,” will automate checks that Washington County previously ran manually, Sheriff Douglas W. Mullendore said.

Washington County is among 21 jurisdictions in Maryland and 1,188 jurisdictions in 41 states nationwide using the capability, ICE said in a press release.

“When an individual comes into the detention center, it basically determines if they are on the list as an illegal immigrant, and if they are, we notify ICE that we have them,” Mullendore said.


Individuals flagged through the check will stay in Washington County to complete any criminal sentence here before potentially being picked up by ICE for a hearing before a federal magistrate, Mullendore said.

“When a match is discovered, ICE evaluates the specific case to determine the individual’s immigration status and takes appropriate enforcement action,” the ICE press release said. “ICE prioritizes the removal of criminal aliens convicted of serious crimes such as major drug offenses, murder, rape and kidnapping, as well as other threats to public safety, such as those with known gang affiliations, drunk-driving arrests, or who are fugitives or frequently try to game the immigration system.”

Sheriff says space limitations keep county from doing the much more rigorous 287g program, but I think the Sheriff is mistaken.  I believe this impediment can be worked around—I think there can be sharing of space with other jurisdictions that do have the bed space. It is really a matter of will!

Mullendore said space constraints would make it impractical for Washington County to participate in another ICE program known as 287(g), which allows the initial hearings for individuals arrested for immigration law violations to be conducted by local jurisdictions.

“Just like our court commissioner does a bond hearing on a subject that’s been arrested, (287(g)) allows them to have that hearing and set a bond for them for the ICE violation,” Mullendore said. “We are not doing that because we do not have the space to house the prisoners here. Until such time as we have that, there really isn’t anything we can do for that.”

Next step for Washington County is the more important E-verify which helps employers identify illegal aliens applying for work.

By the way, readers should know that Obama’s immigrant/open borders base is pretty ticked-off at him, calling his Administration  “…the most anti-immigrant White House we’ve seen in quite some time,” here,  partly due to the large numbers of deportations in the last couple of years.  Good for you Obama (I can’t believe I’m saying that).



  1. Remember, Mullendore doesn’t think we have a problem with illegal aliens in Washington County, but I told him we did 2 years ago

  2. […]… […]

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