In February 2006, the Mecklenburg County Sheriffs Office entered into a partnership with the Department of Homeland Security, Immigration Customs Enforcement to identify individuals arrested in Mecklenburg County who are in the county illegally. This process, known as the 287(g) program, allowed the Mecklenburg County Sheriff's Office to become the first Sheriff's Office east of Phoenix to perform this function.
The voluntary initiative authorizing state and local law enforcement agencies to work with Immigration Customs Enforcement (ICE) to identify and detain immigration offenders is found in Section 287(g) of the "Immigration and Nationality Act." Section 287(g) originated in the 1996 amendments to the Immigration and Nationality Act passed by Congress. The initiative is designed to effectively multiply the forces of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement through enhanced cooperation and communication with state and local law enforcement. Under 287(g), ICE provides state and local law enforcement with the training and subsequent authorization to identify, process, and when appropriate, detain immigration offenders encountered during their regular, daily law-enforcement activity.
Using equipment and technology called IDENT, deputies now fingerprint and photograph all non US born arrestees. The IDENT system searches a special biometric database that only contains information on aliens that have been arrested by immigration or have had some other type of immigration encounter. Additional information regarding an arrestee's immigration status will be determined based on an in-depth interview of the individual.
The mission of the Mecklenburg County Sheriff's Office is to protect the citizens of Mecklenburg County. Identifying illegal immigrants who commit crimes in our community is just one way we accomplish that.
For more information regarding Immigration Customs Enforcement please visit the following websites:
DHS / Detention & Removal Office
6130 Tyvola Centre Drive - Room 209
Charlotte, NC 704-672-6990
For more information regarding the Mecklenburg County Sheriffs Office, 287(g) program, contact Julia Rush: 704-336-3667