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High School Rape Gets Drawn Into Immigration Debate

March 22nd, 2017 by WCBC Radio

As officials reported that one of two students charged with raping a 14-year-old girl in a Maryland high school bathroom entered the United States illegally, the crime became part of a national debate on immigration. White House press secretary Sean Spicer, in response to a reporter’s question at Tuesday’s press briefing, called the crime “shocking, disturbing, horrific.”

 

“I think part of the reason that the president has made illegal immigration and crackdown such a big deal is because of tragedies like this,” he said.

 

Henry Sanchez, 18, and Jose Montano, 17, were charged in the Thursday assault at Rockville High School. The Washington Post reports that Sanchez lived in Guatemala until he was 17. 

Matthew Bourke, spokesman for Immigration and Customs Enforcement, said in a statement that a border patrol agent encountered Sanchez in Texas in August. Sanchez was ordered to appear before an immigration judge, Bourke said, but that appearance has not been scheduled. ICE has since lodged an immigration detainer against Sanchez

 

According to court records, Montano, who was charged as an adult, was born in El Salvador, where he lived for 16 years. ICE officials would not discuss Montano’s immigration status because he is a juvenile.

 

Jack Smith, superintendent of Montgomery County Public Schools, pushed back against the focus on the immigration status of the accused students.

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