A father of a young man who was arrested for assaulting his sister and another woman in a Nebraska jail has filed a lawsuit against the state, claiming his son was illegally detained.
The lawsuit filed Tuesday by attorney Michael B. Baca said that Nebraska law does not require ICE to detain children and did not require the state to provide a reason for his son’s detention.
In a statement, Nebraska Attorney General Lori Swanson said the state is “committed to upholding the civil rights of all our residents, and that includes children.”
She added that ICE will investigate and prosecute the case if warranted.
The Baca lawsuit seeks an order that Nebraska’s Department of Children and Families take the family’s son into custody.
It also alleges that Nebraska violated the Children’s Rights Act when it sent him to an ICE facility and not to an adult jail.
The boy was charged with assaulting his twin sister, who was being held in custody at the jail.
The boy’s parents, along with their lawyer, have asked a judge to release him.
The judge has not yet ruled on the request, but she is expected to rule on the case this week.
Baca said in a statement that his client’s father is upset with ICE and the state’s handling of the case.
He said his client wants his son released to his father.
“The BCA filed this lawsuit to hold the state accountable and to hold ICE accountable for violating our son’s constitutional rights,” Baca wrote.
“We want our children to grow up in a safe, welcoming environment where no one is ever treated unfairly.”
In his lawsuit, Baca’s son said his father was detained and held at the Nebraska Detention Center for a week before being released.
He told the Omaha World-Herald that his father had been assaulted while being held and that ICE detained him when he was released.BACA said in his lawsuit that ICE told him his son had been arrested for resisting arrest and violating the conditions of his release.”ICE has a history of treating its own officers differently than other law enforcement agencies,” Bachelet said in the statement.
“ICE should never have arrested and detained a family member of mine for simply resisting arrest.”
Bachelet did not say whether the agency would investigate and charge ICE.
She did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
In the statement, Bachelets attorney, Joseph Rochon, said Bacheles son had a right to a lawyer, but ICE’s refusal to release his son to him violated his constitutional rights.
Bachelets son’s lawsuit seeks unspecified damages, attorney fees and other relief, as well as a declaration that the state violated the Nebraska Children’s Right Act.
The Nebraska State Police are the lead agency investigating the incident.