TUCSON — Jessica Rodriguez, a self-described undocumented immigrant at the center of controversy surrounding Operation Stonegarden, was involved in shooting a video of Arizona state troopers and Border Patrol agents taking Glenda de la Vega Fernandez, Jesus Antonio Torres, and 12-year-old Dariana Torres de la Vega into custody on Monday.
In the video, which was live streamed on Vimeo, Rodriguez questions Border Patrol agents about why they are taking the people into custody.
“We are questioning why the Border Patrol is here,” Rodriguez tells her viewers, “why they have the highway patrol here in the city limits.”
When an agent explains the people are being detained because they are in the country illegally, Rodriguez urges viewers to “come to 22nd and 9th,” because “they are taking these people into custody.”
The officer from the Arizona Department of Public Safety said they pulled over the vehicle because of its “overly tinted windows.” The Border Patrol was later called to the scene.
When the occupants were determined to be in the country illegally, they were taken into custody.
One man who arrived at the scene to protest crawled under a Border Patrol vehicle to try to prevent it from leaving the scene. He was arrested and later released, said a report from KVOA News. Because of the number of people who arrived to protest, the Tucson Police and Pima County Sheriff’s office sent officers to the scene.
Rodriguez, a member of the Pima County Law Enforcement Partnership Committee, which opposes law enforcement efforts to secure the border, took center stage during the No More Deaths press conference held at the Southside Presbyterian Church after the arrest of the three illegal immigrants in Tucson this weekend.
Operation Stonegarden is a federal and local law enforcement partnership to secure the international border.
Rodriguez, who is known by local officials for her opposition to law enforcement and disdain for patriotic Americans, is emerging as a public figure in the fight to keep borders open.
Rodriguez has said she is an employee of the Southside Worker Day Laborer Center, which according to the organization, is “one of the social justice ministries of Tucson’s Southside Presbyterian Church.”
Video taken by Jessica Rodriguez, who describes herself as undocumented. Rodriguez also serves on the Pima County Law Enforcement Partnership Committee. That Committee was formed as part of an ongoing effort to block Operation Stonegarden.
At the most recent meeting of the Pima County Law Enforcement Partnership Committee, Rodriguez sat and texted while fellow members stood for the Pledge of Allegiance.
Pima County Law Enforcement Partnership Committee members discuss whether those unable to vote legally in the U.S. Should serve on the Committee. Radical activist Isabel Garcia urged fellow members to reject a bylaw that required members to be registered voters. “If you implement it,” said Garcia, “then we lose Jessica.”
According to various reports, troopers stopped the family’s vehicle citing excessive tinting in the windows.
Pima County supervisors Ally Miller and Steve Christy pulled their appointees to the Law Enforcement Partnership Committee after anti-law enforcement members became abusive to law enforcement members of the Committee.
“I’m not willing to legitimize a committee made up of individuals who continually toss out baseless accusations against our law enforcement personnel,” stated Miller at the time. “I can’t, in good conscience, empower a group with members who have an agenda to incite hatred and possibly violence against our first responders who put their lives on the line for us each and every day.”
According to Supervisors Miller and Christy, the committee has attempted to function without a clear scope and purpose for the last several months, but “has been unable to serve the needs of the community while providing anti-law enforcement community activists a taxpayer-funded soapbox.”
The Committee was “created on February 20, 2018 as one of five conditions to accept Operation Stonegarden funds for Federal Fiscal Year 2017.”
The formation was one of the concessions to illegal immigration activists and supervisors Richard Elias, Ramon Valadez, and Sharon Bronson. Although, Pima County Sheriff Mark Napier met all the demands of the activists, they still rejected the federal funding.
During the Obama administration, the three supervisors voted in favor of taking Stonegarden funds. Their recent rejection of the grant money is part of the “resistance” movement against President Donald Trump.
As with all human tragedies, the groups wasted no time raising money for their cause:
Yesterday, a #Tucson family was pulled over for a traffic infraction and the cops called Border Patrol, who detained the family and have since separated the parents from their 12 yo child in custody. Please do what you can to support. #NoOneIsIllegal https://t.co/ZWedu1xawo
— No More Deaths (@NoMoreDeaths) March 20, 2019
Climate change drives mass displacement and migration, contributing to the need for humanitarian aid in the #borderlands. #NoMoreDeaths stands in solidarity with @GretaThunberg and the #ClimateStrike! https://t.co/tooP0UfhR8
— No More Deaths (@NoMoreDeaths) March 15, 2019