In response to the arrest of Jesus Peraza, the Honduran father who was detained after dropping his 8-year-old son off at school, CASA, a Latino community organizing group, held a rally Thursday in front of immigration offices at Hopkins Plaza in downtown Baltimore.
The crowd chanted and waved signs says, "Free Jesus!"CASA was joined by the Latino Providers Network, religious leaders, city council members, and other community organizing groups to demand that ICE officials release Peraza and stay away from schools.
Many young Latino activists working with CASA spoke about their fears of being rounded up by ICE. Jairo Padilla, an 11-grader at NAF High School was one of the youth who spoke through a translator.
"I had hopes of studying engineering in college after high school," said Padilla. "When I heard immigration was picking up folks close to the schools, I started to lose some of that hope and I started to fear what would happen if immigration picked me up?"
— Dominique Bonessi (@dbonessi) May 25, 2017
Councilmen Zeke Cohen and Brandon Scott were both present to show their support for the release of Peraza. Councilman Cohen reminded the crowd of the resolution city council passed in March declaring Baltimore a welcoming city.
Jared Jaskot, Peraza's lawyer, also spoke on Peraza's behalf. On June 1st Jaskot and Peraza will ask a judge to drop the 12-year-old deportation order so he can stay in Baltimore with his family.