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Activists Push For Release Of Local ICE Detainee

Rebecca Green

Local activists and family members want an area immigrant released from immigration detention and on Thursday staged a phone bank on the steps of the Allen County Courthouse.


It was the second time there this week for the group, organized by Faith In Allen County, to protest the detention and pending deportation of Jorge Oliva.


Oliva was arrested for resisting law enforcement, rioting, failure to disperse, and obstructing traffic in mid-June as part of the ongoing protests in support of racial justice.


But the father of two had already been labeled for deportation, and Allen County Sheriff David Gladieux notified Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Oliva is now in a federal immigrant detention center, according to Faith in Allen County leading minister Cookye Rutledge.


Along with his family, activists and religious leaders have been petitioning for Oliva’s release. On Thursday, they called the regional ICE office in Chicago.


Rutledge says this should be an issue for all area Christians. 


“Wherever there’s injustice we have to rise to the occasion and do something about it.”


The Allen County Sheriff’s Office declined to comment Thursday.


Rebecca manages the news at WBOI. She joined the staff in December 2017, and brought with her nearly two decades of experience in print journalism, including 15 years as an award-winning reporter for the Journal Gazette in Fort Wayne.