Lassen County District Attorney Stacey Montgomery attended the May 16 California Sanctuary State Roundtable at the White House with other state officials and President Donald Trump, U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions, the Secretary of Homeland Security Kirstjen Nielsen, Deputy Immigration Customs Enforcement Director Thomas Homan and House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy.
Montgomery, the only district attorney at the roundtable, praised the president and thanked him for his leadership in the fight against illegal aliens.
“In the last four years, I have seen California become a disaster,” Montgomery said. “It’s been tragic to watch my state pass laws that basically have sent our communities into a very dangerous place.”
Montgomery said Trump has many supporters in Lassen County and noted the county’s voters elected the president by the highest margin in the state.
“You are loved in Lassen County,” Montgomery said.
The district attorney said rural California is the forgotten part of the state, “and we do not stand for the policies in Sacramento.”
Montgomery pointed out the “horrible problem with marijuana grows” by illegal immigrants that “decimate” public lands, “and there’s not a thing we can do” to stop them from doing “generational” damage to both the economy and the land.
“Because of the legalization of marijuana in California, now we’re seeing those same individuals working with other criminal groups, the Asian groups, the Russian groups, the motorcycle groups, all kinds of organized crime it’s bringing into California,” Montgomery said.
“So, the legalization made it worse?” Trump asked.
“The legalization made it worse, yes,” Montgomery said. “I’ve been appalled.
As a district attorney, someone who’s sworn to uphold the Constitution and the laws of the state, that we have fallen so far in California.”
Then Montgomery brought up the Juan Esqueda case.
“We are prosecuting an illegal immigrant right now who (allegedly) has been deported several times and has had a violent criminal history who (allegedly) hit and killed a 16-year-old kid, a boy in our community, and fled the scene,” Montgomery said. “So his case is pending right now. After I brought the suit, I was promptly served with a gag order to prevent me from talking about the case.”
Montgomery also said the American Civil Liberties Union contacted her office (and other district attorney offices across the state) to find out what polices were being implemented to comply with SB 54, the Sanctuary State bill.
“Well, the response from my office was very simple,” Montgomery said. “We have nothing because this office will stand for the rule of law, Lassen County stands for the rule of law, and we have no polices to give you because we will not issue such polices from this desk and from this office. We stand with you (President Trump). We are delighted with the actions that you have taken, Mr. Sessions. The people of Lassen County stand with you (addressing the president), I stand with you, and we appreciate everything that you’re doing.”
“Thank you, Stacey, beautifully said,” said Trump.
“I’m greatly honored to be here with the courageous mayors and sheriffs and local leaders from across the state of California, great state,” Trump said as he opened the meeting.
Despite opposition from California Democrats, Trump said thousands of illegal aliens are being deported and the popular border wall is going up and while Californians don’t talk about it, they’re very happy the wall is being built.
“We get them out as fast as we can,” Trump said. “We have the worst laws anywhere in the world for illegal immigration. There’s no place in the world that has laws like we do. Catch and release. Think of it. We catch somebody.
We find out they’re criminals. We end up having to release them. They go into our society … We want people to come into our country based on merit. We’re not looking to keep them out, we’re looking to bring them in.”