PHOENIX (KSAZ) -- A protest took place outside the 4th Avenue Jail Wednesday afternoon, as protesters gather to demand Sheriff Paul Penzone to stop working with ICE at the county jail.
Besides calling on Penzone to stop cooperating with ICE agents, Puente and several local and national immigration activists are also calling for an end to ICE as a whole. Currently, ICE agents are allowed to interview detainees when they are first brought to the county jail. Penzone has said they do not do "Courtesy Holds", meaning they won't delay booking of a suspect for ICE agents.
Counter-protestors from Patriot Movement Arizona have been spotted at the scene. On Wednesday night, officials said four people were arrested for alleged disorderly conduct and trespassing.
Meanwhile, Sheriff Penzone issued the following statement:
"We have and continue to abide by the federal court orders which prohibit our involvement in immigration enforcement. We remain steadfast and unwavering in our commitment to work within our authority to facilitate the mission of our law enforcement partners to include ICE and other federal agencies"
Sheriff Penzone denied interview requests, but pointed out in his statement that so far this year, ICE has flagged about 1,600 detainees in the Maricopa County Jail system. Some of those suspects were arrested for violent crimes, including murder, aggravated assault, and sex abuse.