The wife of Jorge Garcia, a 39-year old Michigan man deported after living in the U.S. for 30 years, spoke out against his deportation to Mexico on Tuesday, saying her family was “devastated.”
“I’m trying to be strong. I just want to get my story out there,” Cindy Garcia said on CNN’s “Newsroom with Brooke Baldwin. ”As depressed as I am – and I just want to scream and cry and lay in bed and not move – I know that I have to come forward for the people who cannot, and tell our story. And how devastated we are that our case should have been looked at as an individual case and not as a whole because my husband is not a criminal.”
Her husband was brought to the U.S. at the age of 10 by an undocumented family member, according to the Detroit Free Press, and had been working since 2005 to obtain a path to U.S. citizenship.
Cindy Garcia said it was “very hard” to explain what happened to the father of her two children, ages 15 and 12.
“It’s very hard because he [the 12-year-old] doesn’t grasp what the government did and he doesn’t understand why they took him either, because he’s not a criminal,” she said. “That’s why we’re trying to justify it with him. And it is very, very hard.”
The Hill added:
In November, Jorge Garcia, who was too old to qualify for protection under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, was ordered to return to Mexico by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) after receiving extensions of his removal since 2009 under the Obama administration.
“It was this year, November 20th was our annual visit with them,” Cindy Garcia told CNN. “We went and they told us they were going to detain him. Our faces turned white. We panicked. We didn’t know what to do.”
“It was very sad, knowing that we had to face this head on and there was no more extensions that were coming,” she added.
When asked about their last words in a viral video of the family saying their goodbyes and crying at Detroit Metropolitan Airport, Cindy Garcia said that she told her husband they would see him soon.
“I love you and we’re going to miss you. And we’re going to bring you back as soon as we can,” she said.
“I love you and we’re going to miss you, and we’re going to bring you back as soon as we can” – Cindy Garcia reveals the last words she shared with her husband prior to his deportation to Mexico https://t.co/2b6HYY65Cr https://t.co/BNs6T2qyvG
— CNN Newsroom (@CNNnewsroom) January 16, 2018
Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) said Garcia’s case is “something we need to look at.”
“Senator Grassley asked me about deporting people who are criminals. Fine. I think we’re doing that as we speak. That’s something to consider,” Graham told reporters on Tuesday. “Now the young man who got deported yesterday, 39 years old, apparently, is something we need to look at.”
Garcia’s deportation comes as Congress negotiates with the White House on a fix for DACA.