Monday Sept. 26, 2016
With a sizable population of Latino newcomers here, many from Mexico, immigration is a big topic in Elkhart County.
There are many advocates for Latinos and, on the flip side, many who clamor for stronger action against undocumented immigrants. Thus, when the Elkhart County Sheriff’s Department started cracking down on suspected undocumented immigrants, asking for tips via Facebook, the issue escalated.
We in the newsroom had been noticing a steady stream of arrests of people allegedly using fake and fraudulent identity cards and we jumped on it, tying it to the Facebook posts. Many in the Latino community had also noticed, and I pulled together a story, contrasting criticism of Latino advocates who saw the law enforcement action as overzealous and Sheriff Brad Rogers, who defended the moves as upholding the law and standing up for victims of identity theft:
- “Profiling or protection? Elkhart County police under fire as Latino identity theft arrests surge,” Sept. 16, 2016
I got a lead on one of the women arrested, Candida Rosete, and followed that story with a piece on her, offering up her viewpoint of being undocumented. Now, 36, she was brought here when she was 6-years-old, has a 15-year-old U.S.-b0rn son and sees the United States as her home:
- “‘My roots are here’: Undocumented Elkhart woman from Mexico mulls her future after arrest,” Sept. 18, 2016
Even Univision, the Spanish-language television, jumped on the issue.
I’m now working on a story offering up the perspective of those who have had their identities stolen, the hassles and problems they face.