“It’s time to separate the Tucson Police Department from the Border Patrol.”


by David Safier

2_18_13_demonstr2I attended the 4pm rally at the Tucson Police Department to protest the arrest of Rene Meza Huertha by the TPD and the Border Patrol as well as the arrest of Raúl Alcaráz Ochoa who laid down under the Border Patrol vehicle to try and stop the arrest. Pamela Powers has  more details about the arrest in an earlier post.

The crowd numbered about 250-300 — that's a conservative estimate — and the media showed up to record the event. A number of people spoke, including Raúl Alcaráz Ochoa, pictured.

I spoke with City Council member Karin Uhlich after the event. She said we need "full and transparent information from the Tucson Police Department" about what happened during the arrest. "The mission of the police," she said, "is to keep the community safe. The future of the community is dependent on the relationship between the TPD and community members." She expressed concern that events like this jeopardize both the atmosphere in Tucson and the regular flow of people who come here from Mexico and elsewhere to visit and shop. "This is the kind of thing that could undermine our efforts to assure everyone that this is a safe and respectful community."

Another rally is planned for Tuesday, 12:30pm, at the Federal Courthouse.

More photos below the fold.




  1. Harmless children do not deserve to lose their father to immediate deportation for this event. Ostensibly we have a procedure in this country for dealing with such claims, and simply destroying a family is not really supposed to be a part of it. To say the kids were in the trunk is, right there, an unacceptable telling of the tale. But it really doesn’t matter. Defensible or indefensible, this is not a reason to separate a family, and if it were my children and myself (a white woman) there would probably a) never have been a call made and b) not be a question of probable permanent separation from my kids.

  2. According to the Tucson Sentinel, the children were in the back of a hatchback. The car did not have a trunk. I will not defend driving with children in the back of a hatchback. (I also will not defend driving with a child in the back of a pickup, which seems to me much worse, although the Arizona legislature sees no problem with it.) But cutting off parental rights and separating children from their parents because of it is barbaric.

    To say that the father has committed “child abuse” and “should not have children” and to wish that “the family was seperated (sic)” is so extreme that one has to wonder what is the real reason why Anna and Alberto have got their panties in a wad?

    Hmmmmm? What could it be?
    Be careful. Your hate is showing.

  3. Jana.. Would you stuff your kids in a trunk and drive around town? guess Your SHIT does stink if you stand up for child abuse..

  4. “I hope the family was seperated, this man should not have children.”

    Anna, I have also been outraged to see children not properly restrained in vehicles. But I struggle to respond civilly.

    You are so lucky that your shit don’t stink.

    Pretty civil, considering.

  5. this is crazy! No one is protesting the drivers incapability of providing children with safety! How come no one is outraged at the poor condition of these children! no matter what immigration laws are out there, if a child is not riding in a vehicle properly, they have a huge chance of serious injury and death!!!! shame on the protesters for not being more outraged about child neglect… child safety!!!!!!!!! car accidents from improperly seated children are the #1 cause of death !!!!!! Where is the outrage for this mans utter disregard for the safety of harmless children. I hope the family was seperated, this man should not have children