Heartless immigration officials detained a Westchester teen on the morning of his senior prom — causing him to miss the big dance — and he may not even be allowed to graduate in the next few days, according to reports.
Locals are now rallying around 19-year-old Ossing High School student Diego Puma Macancela, a native of Ecuador.
ICE agents Thursday detained the teen, acting on the orders of an immigration judge, Ossining Patch reports.
The cruelness of the timing shocked local officials and residents, who have started a petition asking that he be allowed to stay at least for graduation.
“A simple bit of humanity to allow this student to graduate from high school,” wrote Steve W., one of 1,600 people who have signed the petition.
Village officials say Macancela had been allowed to stay in the country for several years while his case was being reviewed.
But ICE says Macancela has already overstayed his welcome in the US — the judge ordered his removal in November, the agency told the Ossing Daily Voice.
Town leaders slammed ICE for failing to notify local cops that agents were in town and said the whole incident has created a mood of “fear and anxiety” in the community.
“Ensuring that residents feel safe in our community, and will report crimes and seek assistance from the local police department, is essential for keeping everyone in Ossining safe,” Mayor Victoria Gearity told Patch.
But the immigration enforcement agency rejected that claim, telling the Daily Voice it had notified police ahead of time.
Macancela’s lawyers have already filed a petition to at least allow him to finish out his schooling, according to school Superintendent Ray Sanchez.
“Given permission by the courts, we would, of course, welcome our student back for his final exams and graduation next week,” Sanchez told Patch.
Source: New York Post