Faith group celebrates ICE detainee’s release

By Corinne Rose | Fort Wayne’s NBC
July 9, 2020

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FORT WAYNE, Ind. (Fort Wayne’s NBC) — The group Faith in Indiana publicly celebrated the release of an undocumented immigrant from federal detention.

“I freaking love you guys,” Jorge Oliva says.

The 26-year-old thanked his supporters who were organized by Faith in Indiana.

He’s now free from a federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement detention facility, after having been behind bars for three weeks.

“It means a lot that people of faith were able to achieve one tangible change in a family’s life in this city,” Faith in Allen County’s Audrey Davis says.

Oliva’s mother brought him to Fort Wayne from Mexico when he was six, and he’s lived here as an undocumented immigrant ever since.

Already on ICE’s radar for previous misdemeanor offenses, agents took him into custody after Fort Wayne police arrested him at Black Lives Matter protests.

He says even though he knew he risked being arrested there, he feels so strongly in the cause that he has no regrets.

“In order for everybody to come out and speak up. Speak up against injustice, speak up against systematic oppression,” he says.

Oliva says he will die if he’s ultimately deported to Mexico because living in the United States is all he’s ever really known.

However, he says he’s willing to take what comes.

“I’m a sacrificial pawn. If I have to use my case in order to give people strength and courage to speak up, I’ll do it all over again. I’m still going to do it,” he says.

Oliva has a deportation hearing in Chicago in August.

Until then, he says he’ll be back out with protesters for the Black Lives Matter movement.

“I’m not backing down, I’m not giving in, and I am not going to stop the momentum we have going,” Oliva says.

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