Sheriff of county where Laken Riley was murdered campaigned on not cooperating with ICE; listen

The sheriff of the Georgia county where Laken Riley was murdered had campaigned on not cooperating with immigration officials.

During a 2020 interview with Athens Political Nerds, a local outlet, then-Athens-Clark County Sheriff candidate John Williams explicitly said he had no interest in cooperating with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officials.

“It is not my intention to cooperate with detainers [from ICE],” Williams said. “I see it as the sheriff’s responsibility to protect the community. We can’t help with a culture of fear in our community and expect our community to respond and help us in situations.”

“Building relationships is key and if we’re antagonizing people because they are undocumented, then they built that fear in them, and they’re not likely to come to us. Not only when we need their help, but when they need our help,” he continued.

“So that’s not something that we’d be doing. We won’t be doing any types of round-ups, and we won’t be contributing to that culture of fear. We want people to respect the police, but we also want them to trust us,” he added.

Listen to some of what he said below or watch the full interview here:

As previously reported, last week a criminal illegal alien was named in the murder of Augusta University nursing student Laken Riley, 22, a woman whom the suspect reportedly hadn’t even known.

“The killing of Laken Hope Riley, a junior on the dean’s list at Augusta University, appears to be a ‘crime of opportunity’ by ‘an individual who woke up with bad intentions,’ University of Georgia Police Chief Jeff Clark said at a Friday news conference,” according to CNN.

“Campus police said they are recommending charges against Jose Antonio Ibarra, 26, of Athens, including felony murder, false imprisonment, kidnapping, and concealing the death of another in Riley’s killing,” CNN reported.

Ibarra is a criminal illegal alien from Venezuela who was “released” into the U.S. after crossing over in Sept. 2022 “due to lack of detention space,” according to NewsNation’s Ali Bradley:

Critics say Riley’s death is a direct consequence of the local community’s “sanctuary city”-like policies.

In 2019, for example, the city of Athens passed a resolution that declared that the county “is welcoming to people from all lands and backgrounds.”

“Whereas, we unflinchingly defend the human rights of all people, including citizens, noncitizens, and those without documentation, and recognize that we cannot be witness to the violation of constitutional rights given to all people, repeatedly reaffirmed in cases such as Yick Wo v. Hopkins and Plyler v. Doe,” the resolution read.

“Therefore let it be resolved by the Mayor and Commission of Athens-Clarke County, Georgia that: The Athens-Clarke County Unified Government is welcoming to people from all lands and backgrounds and strives to foster a community where individuals and families of all statuses feel safe, are able to prosper, and can breathe free,” it continued.

Who was mayor at the time? Kelly Girtz, the same guy who this week triggered massive outrage after he sought to blame Riley’s murder on former President Donald Trump’s legitimate warnings about criminal illegal alien crime:

“While 2019 was not that long ago, you might remember the dynamic we were living in, in the late teens in this country where you had the president of the United States speaking in the most vile terms about people who were foreign-born,” Girtz said at a Wednesday morning press conference. “And you had that notion metastasizing in places like Charlottesville.”

Ever since the presser, users of  the social media platform X have been relentlessly slamming him.


Vivek Saxena


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