El Paso County files appeal in ACLU case on immigrant holds

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KKTV) - El Paso County Sheriff Bill Elder cannot hold immigrants strictly at the request of ICE, a judge has ruled.

The county is fighting that ruling and officially filed a formal appeal on Friday of District Court Judge Bentley’s Temporary Restraining Order and Preliminary Injunction in connection with 18CV30549 Cisneros vs. Sheriff Bill Elder.

The ruling comes after the ACLU filed a lawsuit on behalf of two detainees at the El Paso County jail.

According to the judge, the sheriff's office must have a warrant or is otherwise in violation of the Fourth Amendment. The decision places an immediate injunction on the practice in the county.

The Colorado Immigrant Right Coalition said it applauded the decision.

"Sheriff Elder was right by the law, and in his good faith attempt to collaborate with a federal agency, he has been hung out to dry. We call on ICE to stop their campaign of misinformation with Colorado sheriffs. As a federal agency, ICE should be standing to help our local jurisdictions protect our nation’s constitution, not attempting to bully our local sheriffs into holding people and notifying ICE of release dates without due process or probable cause," the organization said in a statement.

"Sheriff Elder has been a champion of collaboration and cooperation between law enforcement agencies because it is an effective and efficient way to stop criminal activity and protect public safety," according to a release from El Paso County. "To that end he has stood steadfastly with ICE in its mission and has continued to support that mission under the terms of a formal written agreement with ICE to house federal detainees."

In the appeal filed Friday the county says Sherff Elder was placed in "an impossible position: either violate the Order by accepting ICE detainees or breach the IGSA (Intergovernmental Service Agreement between ICE and the El Paso County Sheriff’s Office) and risk loss of public funding.”