Outgoing Democrat California Gov. Jerry Brown decided to defend the state’s sanctuary laws in one of his final acts as governor, saying that Cpl. Ronil Singh’s death had “nothing to do” with them.
Brown told KXTV in one of his final interviews as California’s governor that he did not think California’s current “sanctuary state” law shielding illegal aliens from federal immigration authorities, SB 54, would lead to an increase in illegal alien crime.
“No, I don’t think so,” Brown said.
“I think people now are looking to blame somebody because of the terrible things that happened,” he continued. “But it had nothing to do with the law of California.”
Cpl. Singh was allegedly shot to death by an illegal alien on December 26 during a traffic stop to pull over a man suspected of driving under the influence (DUI). The murder suspect, Gustavo Perez Arriaga, is a Mexican national who entered the U.S. illegally.
Brown signed SB 54, which limited state and local law enforcement agencies’ cooperation with federal immigration officials, into law in 2017, and some officials say the 2017 law is to blame for Singh’s death.
Stanislaus County Sheriff Adam Christianson said SB 54 kept state law enforcement officials from reporting Arriaga to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officials.
Brown claimed that Arriaga had already been arrested multiple times before the sanctuary law went into effect, giving federal immigration authorities ample time to go after the suspected criminal illegal alien.
“In this case, the individual had been arrested and actually convicted twice of driving under the influence and there was a warrant out for his arrest and no one picked him up, and he was arrested and brought in to jail and brought into jail before the sanctuary law was even enacted,” Brown said. “ICE, the immigration people, could have gone out and gotten him. The police or the sheriff could have told the immigration service.”
Brown will end his term as California’s governor Monday morning when Gov.-elect Gavin Newsom will be sworn in at the state capitol.