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Local DREAMer Who Spent 42 Days in Federal Custody Won’t Be Deported

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Erika Mahoney
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A federal judge dismissed Juan Martinez's deportation case.

A Salinas DREAMer no longer faces deportation. A judge threw out the case in late May, three months after the DREAMer with DACA status landed in jail.

The case began in early March when Juan Martinez, 20, was arrested after driving to the Monterey County Jail with drugs in his car. After serving his time, Martinez was supposed to be released on March 24. Instead, ICE agents took custody of him.

Martinez, who was brought to the United States from Mexico at the age of six, spent 42 days in federal custody. And up until May 30, he faced the possibility of deportation. That’s when Honorable Elizabeth Young of the U.S. Department of Justice granted a motion dismissing his removal proceedings.

According to his attorney, Blanca Zarazua, Martinez is back to work in the fields where he packs produce. Zarazua says he’s still very affected by what happened.

Erika joined KAZU in 2016. Her roots in radio began at an early age working for the independent community radio station in her hometown of Boulder, Colorado. After graduating from the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University in 2012, Erika spent four years working as a television reporter. She’s very happy to be back in public radio and loves living in the Monterey Bay Area.
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