A previously deported illegal immigrant faces DUI-related charges in connection with a July 4 near head-on collision in the Phoenix, Arizona, area that nearly killed a mother and her two young children.
Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu indicated that the suspect in the hit and run that totaled the mom’s SUV had been deported back to Mexico six times in the last three years.
Multiple media outlets identify the suspect as Manuel Perez-Vasquez, 29. He and several passengers reportedly fled the scene of the July 4 accident, but he apparently returned later.
The suspect who was also operating an SUV apparently swerved into the wrong lane, which prompted the crash with the young mother’s vehicle.
“Detectives from the PCSO Vehicular Crimes Unit determined Perez-Vasquez, 29, traveled left of center, causing the collision. Perez-Vasquez allegedly showed signs of drug impairment and was placed under arrest on suspicion of driving while impaired by drugs and leaving the scene of an injury collision, a felony. He allegedly confessed to smoking marijuana before the collision,” Maricopa.com reported.
Cops reportedly needed to get a court order for a blood sample because the suspect refused to give one. He also declined to give an address or identify the owner of the vehicle or the passengers.
A five-year-old boy and a two-year-old girl in the other vehicle were rushed to the hospital for treatment.
Describing what happened, the sheriff explained that “She sees a car coming head on… so she immediately pulls over as far as she could off the side of the road and this car still comes and sideswipes [her]… totaling her car.”
Cops arrested Perez-Vasquez for suspicion of driving while impaired by drugs and leaving the scene of an injury collision. Additional charges are also possible as the investigation continues.
Sheriff Babeu declared that the suspect, if convicted, should serve time in Arizona rather than simply being turned over to federal immigration officials for deportation number seven. “And likely all they’re going to do is send him back to Mexico, and he’s likely to return again, and so this is the problem that we have, and people are scratching their heads wondering how this happens… it appears there are no consequences for breaking immigration law,” he insisted.
Perez-Vazquez is due back in court on July 15.
In a case that has made national headlines and raised questions about the sanctuary city policy, a five-time deported illegal alien from Mexico has admitted that he fatally shot Kathryn Steinle, 32, as she was walking on Pier 14 of the San Francisco Embarcadero waterfront on July 1, but has claimed it was an accident.
According to the Washington Post, the Obama administration has supposedly shifted its immigration enforcement priorities.
“In recent months, the Department of Homeland Security has taken steps to ensure that the majority of the United States’ 11.3 million undocumented immigrants can stay in this country, with agents narrowing enforcement efforts to three groups of illegal migrants: convicted criminals, terrorism threats or those who recently crossed the border.”
[image credit: Bill Morrow]