Governor Signs Bill to Promote Cooperation with Law Enforcement

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

(Sacramento) Governor Brown signed groundbreaking legislation late Friday that will prohibit law enforcement from detaining a crime victim or witness solely for an actual or suspected immigration violation.

“We need to remove the fear and uncertainty that is rampant in our immigrant communities and provide protection to undocumented individuals when they seek to cooperate with law enforcement,” said Assemblymember Jones-Sawyer, who is also the chair of the Assembly Public Safety Committee. “Preventing witnesses and victims of crimes from being detained and turned over to Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) is not only the right public policy, but it will also help law enforcement with their investigations, promote social responsibility, and improve police community relationships.”

"It is in the best interest of all Californians to encourage all persons — victims, witnesses or anyone who provides evidence to assist in a criminal investigation — to cooperate with law enforcement,” stated Jones-Sawyer.

Current law does not ensure that an undocumented victim or witness will not be detained and deported as a direct result of cooperating with police; AB 493 ensures that immigration status cannot be used to victimize immigrants who do the right thing and will assist law enforcement and make our state safer for everyone.

AB 493 will go into effect January 2018.

Serving as the voice of the people of California's 59th District in the State Assembly, Reginald Byron Jones-Sawyer, Sr. was elected to the State Legislature in November 2012 and re-elected in 2014. The district he represents encompasses a wide-range of diverse, culturally rich and dynamic communities. It lies entirely within Los Angeles County and includes the neighborhoods of South Los Angeles, Florence-Firestone, Walnut Park, and a portion of Huntington Park.