PERSPECTIVE | The administration’s war on immigrants will find undocumented women squarely in its sights.
A high school junior talking to other students in the hallway at her Long Island school. A scene both as unremarkable and as innocuous as it is common.
Yet for one soft-spoken 16-year-old girl, referred to in media reports only as “Vanessa,” it led to a month in a New Jersey county jail in immigration detention.
Police officers stationed at her school believed the teens she was talking to were members of the MS13 gang — a primary target of President Trump’s intensifying immigration enforcement efforts. That speculation alone led the officers to label her as a “gang member,” and contact immigration authorities. “That was her pattern of criminal gang activity,” says Sarah Gonzalez, who examined the evidence in the case and reported on the story for WNYC.