Tuesday, May 7, 2019
More than 100 Desert View High School students walked from their school to the Pima County Sheriff's Department Benson Highway HQ on Monday, May 6, to protest the Border Patrol's detainment of their classmate, Thomas Torres-Maytorena.
Torres-Maytorena, a high school senior a few weeks from graduating, was pulled over by a Pima County Sheriff's Department deputy on May 2 and ultimately ended up detained by border patrol agents because he was an undocumented immigrant.
Deputy Jeffrey Creller pulled over Torres-Maytorena on the night of May 2 while he was driving a Kia Spectra with an expired registration, according to a Pima County Sheriff's Department report.
Torres-Maytorena, who had two passengers in the car, told Creller he had no ID or driver's license and that he had never been given identification from the state. Initially, Torres-Maytorena told the officer his name was Thomas Torres.
The car was registered to Lorena Rodriguez, who Torres-Maytorena said was his mother. After Torres-Maytorena told Creller his mom was unaware he had taken the vehicle, Creller spoke with Rodriguez over the phone, who “initially indicated she was unaware that he had the vehicle. However, she recanted a few moments later and stated she was indeed aware he had the vehicle, as she had sent him to the store to pick up some things.”
Torres-Maytorena was unable to provide Creller with a Social Security number, so Creller again called Rodriguez, but the SSN she ultimately provided did not belong to Torres-Maytorena.
Creller cited Torres-Maytorena for driving with a suspended license plate and without a driver's license, registration and insurance.
Torres-Maytorena then gave Creller his high school ID, which listed his name as Thomas Torres-Maytorena and, when Creller pointed out he hadn't given him his full name, Torres-Maytorena said that he goes by Thomas Torres, even though it wasn't his legal surname. He also told Creller that Rodriguez "was in fact not his actual mother but more of a ‘stepmother.’”
At that point, Torres-Maytorena revealed he was an “undocumented illegal immigrant.” Creller then called the Sheriff’s Department to send out Border Patrol agents, who ultimately took custody of Torres-Maytorena “for an overstayed visa.”