(ESPAÑOL) An ACLU attorney said that an immigrant child died shortly after being released from a family detention center in Dilley, outside of San Antonio.
George Tzamaras, a spokesman for the group, said it received the information from someone who had been in touch with the family. He said he could not share any additional details, including when and how the death occurred or how old the child was.
“We do not have information on the cause of death or information that confirms a connection between medical treatment at (the facility) and this death,” Katy Murdza, advocacy coordinator of the Dilley Pro Bono Project, an immigrant aid group, said in an email. “We have, however, seen ongoing inadequacies in the standard of care provided to mothers and children in Dilley, and have filed complaints with the government raising these concerns.”
Danielle Bennett, a spokeswoman for Immigration and Customs Enforcement, which runs the nation’s three family detention centers for immigrants, said in an email that no child has died at Dilley while in the agency’s care.
“We are looking into the report of the death after custody, but without any specifics about who this was we are unable to provide anything further at this time,” she said.
Hundreds of separated families have been reunited in recent days at Dilley and another family detention center near San Antonio in Karnes. Those facilities also house families who were apprehended at the border, but not separated by the government, so it was not clear whether the child had been separated as part of the administration’s now-rescinded policy or had been detained there together with a parent.
Melissa Turcios, a lawyer in Washington D.C., said in an email that she is a friend of the child’s family and trying to connect them with pro bono counsel. She declined to provide any further information.