The granddaughter of 92-year-old New York City woman who was allegedly raped and murdered by an illegal immigrant blasted the sanctuary city policy that allowed him back on the street.
“I am the granddaughter of … the 92-year-old woman who was raped and murdered in Queens,” said Daria Ortiz, fighting back tears and standing next to President Trump during a border security event at the White House on Friday. “My grandmother raised her children and her grandchildren while working hard to give us a future.”
“The tragedy is my grandmother is not ever going to be here again,” Ortiz added. “The man that is responsible for this should have never had the opportunity had his multiple offenses been ignored. The system not only failed our family, but they failed our city.”
Ortiz’s grandmother, Maria Fuertes, was found strangled lying on a sidewalk in Queens early morning on Jan. 6, with her clothes pulled above her waist. She died hours later in the hospital.
Police arrested and charged 21-year-old Guyanese national Reeaz Khan with the rape and murder of Fuertes. Khan admitted to the crime before later pleading not guilty.
He was arrested 6 weeks earlier after allegedly slashing his father with a broken ceramic mug. ICE filed a detainer request on Khan the day he was arrested for those charges, but Khan was released on bail in defiance of that request due to New York City’s sanctuary city laws.
Earlier this month, President Trump mentioned the tragedy in his State of the Union address.
“It was a deadly choice to release a man on an active ICE detainer back onto the streets after his first arrest included assault and weapon charges, and he now faces new charges, including murder,” ICE officer Thomas Decker told the New York Post.
Ortiz told reporters and Border Patrol agents who Trump had invited to the White House that she hopes her grandmother’s death was not in vain.
“Our family’s hope is that her death was not in vain and that preventive measures are put into place to ensure nothing like this ever happens to anyone again,” she said. “The tragedy is that this could have been avoided had there been no sanctuary law,” she added.