A man and woman, who were farm workers in rural California, were killed in a crash on Cecil Avenue, in Delano, California after they fled from Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents (ICE) in California, according to the Delano Police Department.
Santos Hilario Garcia, 35, and Marcelina Garcia Profecto, 33, were in their SUV leaving a home in rural Delano — north of Bakersfield, California — when federal immigration agents (ICE) arrived in the area searching for a Mexican citizen who had been deported.
The agents saw that Santo Garcia matched the description of their search subject and stopped the couple. The couple initially pulled over and stopped, but sped off when the agents exited their vehicle, according to ICE spokeswoman Lori Haley. ICE agents apparently lost sight of the vehicle.
“As the officers departed the location of the attempted engagement, they came across the overturned vehicle and immediately dialed 911 for assistance. Local officials were on the scene moments later,” according to ICE spokeswoman Lori Haley.
The couple’s SUV had veered into a dirt shoulder, overturned and struck a utility pole.
The two occupants of the car were already dead at the scene and immediately pronounced dead after paramedics arrived.
ICE later learned that Santos Garcia was not the specific person ICE agents were attempting to find, but Garcia was previously stopped three times between 2008 and 2017 trying to cross the Mexican border into the United States. He was deported under expedited removal last year, according to ICE Lori Haley.
Marcelina Garcia Profecto had no prior encounters with ICE.
United Farm Workers President Arturo Rodriguez said the couple worked as farm workers and had six children between the ages of 8 and 18. “Marcelina and Santos were just going out and looking for work,” Rodriguez told reporters. Rodriguez said, “When they (Marcelina and Santos) learned they were ICE agents, because of their legal status, they became very scared and as a result they took off and eventually had a crash here on Cecil avenue.”
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