Bainbridge police chief: No reports of ICE activity on island

Bainbridge Island police have not received any reports of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) activity on the island in the past week.

Bainbridge Police Chief Jeff Horn said he’s not heard of any incidents where federal immigration agents have been working on Bainbridge.

Earlier this week, news outlets in the region reported that ICE agents had stopped a man at a Shell gas station in Port Orchard while conducting a sweep in search of undocumented immigrants across Kitsap County on Monday.

According to the Port Orchard Independent, agents also were reported to have arrested several people in Port Orchard. The same occurred in Bremerton and a few other Kitsap locations, according to Ray Garrido, legal services director at Kitsap Immigrant Assistance Center.

“We are deeply concerned about this action against our community,” Garrido said of the ICE sweep and arrests. “We will continue to support community members with legal representation and other forms of help.

“People should be aware that the recently passed Keep Washington Working Act restricts local law enforcement from enforcing immigration laws,” Garrido told the Port Orchard newspaper. “Our local law enforcement community did not participate in this action. As they have said, they are here to protect our community, not enforce immigration law.”

The man stopped at the Port Orchard gas station was not arrested by ICE agents, but he posted on Facebook that he was a victim of racial profiling, according to a story in the Port Orchard Independent. The man said he was born in the U.S. and is an American citizen of Latino heritage.

“Just got raided at the Shell Gas Station [by] not 1, not 2 but 8 immigration police officers,” Francisco wrote on Facebook. “Didn’t break a single law, yet was harassed based on my ethnicity (skin tone). They tried barging into my car and [grabbing me] by force.”

He called it the “worst experience of my life” and said he felt humiliated having the agents try to engage him in front of television news reporters from Q13 Fox.

The Washington Immigration Solidarity Network has set up a hotline for residents and has asked them to contact the organization should they observe ICE agents conducting stops in the community. The toll-free phone number is 844-724-3737.