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Sheriff's statement regarding I.C.E. Activities

Post Date:03/13/2019 3:00 PM

February 8, 2019


Contact: AnnMarie Breen
Senior Public Information Officer                                                                                                                         
Desk: 919-560-0826
Mobile: 919-748-1475 

Durham, NC - Sheriff Clarence Birkhead, the Durham County Sheriff stands by his decision to end the practice of honoring ICE detainers. Detainers are a request from Immigration and Customs Enforcment or ICE made of detention centers to hold suspected undocumented immigrants 48 hours beyond the time they would legally be allowed to be released after posting bond or serving a sentence.

ICE is notified of an individuals presence in a facility when they are entered into a database accessible by all law enforcement.  Once an individual is processed into the detention center ICE has the opportunity to obtain appropriate court orders or warrants to take someone into custody.  We will comply with these legal court orders. 

In response to a statement made by immigration officials today Sheriff Birkhead offers the following statement “It is unfortunate that ICE is now becoming more active in North Carolina, specifically in Durham. The recent actions of ICE agents are making persons, in our community, afraid of law enforcement. The decision I made to not honor ICE detainers was in part to help ALL of Durham’s people feel safe and encourage our residents to feel like they can trust my deputies, and law enforcement in general.  And, if ICE agents presented a warrant, which is based on probable cause, in my capacity as sheriff I would support such an action.”




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