Detained DACA recipient says ICE won't allow him his wheelchair or medicine


Emmanuel Ayala Frutos, a 21-year-old currently held at an Immigration and Customs Enforcement detention center in Tacoma, Washington, may not be getting the medical attention he needs, according to a blog post from the American Civil Liberties Union of Oregon

According to Ian Philabaum, an immigrant rights advocate at Innovation Law Lab, ICE showed up to Frutos' house early Sunday morning, without a warrant and said they were there to talk about his DACA status then detained him. 

Mat dos Santos, legal director of the ACLU-OR, expressed concern that Frutos was not allowed to bring the medication he uses to control his bipolar diagnosis with him when being detained — or his wheelchair.

"This is an awful, inhumane case," dos Santos said. "Emmanuel should be recovering at home with his family, not locked away without his medication in Tacoma. His family said that ICE agents would only let him bring his leg brace, but they insisted he be allowed to bring his walker."


According to the ACLU-OR, Frutos broke both his legs after being struck by a car while riding his skateboard in February. He underwent surgeries after the accident. Frutos was also hospitalized twice in 2016 for mental illness. 

"Removing Emmanuel from his family right now is cruel," Andrea Williams, executive director of Causa Oregon, said on ACLU-OR's blog. "Emmanuel needs to be back at his home in Portland where he can heal and recover. His family is very worried. We all are very worried." 

Frutos came to Portland at the age of six from Michoacan, Mexico, and began to receive benefits under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program in 2013. According to ACLU-OR, Frutos's DACA benefits expired two weeks ago and he was in the process of renewing them. 

ICE spokesperson Rose Richeson told Fusion that Frutos was targeted for immigration enforcement because of a prior criminal conviction. In February, Frutos 

In February, Frutos appeared before a judge for possessing and showing a butterfly knife in November. According to ACLU-OR, the judge found that Frutos was not a danger to the community. Since appearing before the judge, Frutos completed an anger management program and attended all necessary court dates and meetings. 

Trump has previously said that he wants to deal with kids who receive DACA benefits with "a lot of heart," calling them "incredible kids." However, this is not the first time that a DACA recipient has been the subject of an ICE arrest. Under Trump, deportations have become increasingly aggressive, including arrests in broad daylight and in front of children, and have targeted more noncitizens without serious criminal backgrounds, as well.