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Federal Court Lifts Injunction on Arizona’s Controversial “Show Me Your Papers” Provision: How SB1070 Will Impact You

10 facts about enforcement of Arizona’s Immigration Law SB 1070 

On September 18, 2012 District Judge Susan Bolton release a temporary restraining order on the controversial provisions in Arizona SB 1070. Since it became effective in 2010, it faced legal opposition which led to a US Supreme Court decision. At the center of the debate has been the center of the debate was the “Show me your paper’s” provision SB 1070 A.R.S. 11-1051 (B).  The United States Supreme Court held that that enforcement of this provision by the State of Arizona was constitutional.

Last week, the Phoenix Police Chief Daniel V. Garcia’s weighed in on some common questions people have about how police will be forcing SB 1070 “Show me your papers” provision. Here are 10 things that a person can expect in a police stop:

  • The officer must have “reasonable suspicion” to make the stop, based on violation of criminal or traffic laws. Examples criminal suspicion includes, but not limited to DUI, suspicion of drugs use, possession or trafficking, burglary, theft, or robbery. A civil traffic stop would apply to speeding, failure to obey a traffic signal, or other violation.
  • That suspicion cannot be built on language or ethnicity alone;
  • The stop may involve two factors: Once the Officer makes the stop for reasonable suspicion of a crime or traffic violation, they will request ID from the driver. If the driver is unable to provide proof of identity or residency referenced in SB 1070 A.R.S. 11-1051 (B), then immigration status of the driver, may questioned;
  • “Reasonable suspicion” will only apply to the driver, that is the police officer’s first and foremost responsibility;
  •  Once the vehicle is stopped, however, the police are not prohibited from having a conversation with other passengers. If something surfaces in the conversation that gives police reasonable to believe passengers are in the U.S. illegally, the officer may proceed with requesting their identity and proof of residency;
  • If an officer makes the decision based on protocol that the driver is suspected of being her illegally the officer may converse with other passengers in the vehicle. Their concern at that point, will be to rule out transportation or smuggling illegal immigrants into the US.
  • If the driver of a vehicle is in the US legally, generally,  there  will generally be no grounds to question any of the passengers in a vehicle;
  • If the driver or passengers are reasonably suspected by the officer to be in the US illegally, they must  contact Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE)  officials to confirm the driver or passengers residency status;
  • If the police officer is unable to reach an Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) official, or they do not respond, the motorist is free to go.
  • The police can only detain a driver the length of time if would take for any routine traffic stop

These are just some things you can expect during a police stop. Every situation is unique, and may involve different circumstances. Arizona state, Federal Immigration laws, and police procedures are all subject to change. You should always consult an attorney who practices law in the area for which you received any charges for current information.

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