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Man charged in Hillsborough child's death was in country illegally

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Man charged in Hillsborough child's death was in country illegally

Post by Admin on Thu Dec 29, 2016 6:31 am



HILLSBOROUGH, North Carolina (WTVD) --
A man charged in the death of a 5-year-old boy in Hillsborough is "unlawfully present" in the United States, Immigration and Customs Enforcement confirmed to ABC11 on Wednesday night.

An arrest warrant alleges that 28-year-old Alejandro Suarez left a construction truck running and did not set the parking brake Monday afternoon before it began rolling down a hill into a home, killing William Everett Copeland - who went by the name of Everett.

Earlier Wednesday, during a court appearance for Suarez, officials said he was suspected of being in the U.S. illegally, and ICE has put a detainer on him.

Officials told ABC11 on Wednesday afternoon that Suarez told police that he was a Mexican citizen. His immigration status has not been confirmed by authorities.

On Wednesday evening, ICE confirmed to ABC11 that Suarez was "unlawfully present" in the U.S. In a statement, the agency said:

"U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) issued a request that local law enforcement notify ICE prior to releasing Alejandro Suarez, a Mexican national unlawfully present in the United States, following his arrest December 26, on misdemeanor death by motor vehicle charges out of Orange County, North Carolina. Suarez is an ICE enforcement priority due to a prior conviction for driving under the influence in 2009.

ICE is focused on smart, effective immigration enforcement that prioritizes the removal of criminal aliens and other individuals who pose a threat to national security, public safety and border security. Aliens convicted of crimes involving violence are among ICE's highest priority for removal from the country."

The tragic incident happened on Dogwood Bloom Lane in Hillsborough's Forest Ridge subdivision, a new neighborhood not far from U.S. 70, where homes under construction are mixed with finished ones.

Just before 1 p.m., construction crews were loading the back of the truck when it started rolling. No one was inside the cab when it started gaining speed down the hill, through a front yard, a driveway, and then a garage door.

A group of children was playing in the yard and Everett couldn't get out of the way. The truck hit him before crashing into the home. Neighbors said a doctor who lives in the neighborhood ran over to help; she performed CPR until emergency crews arrived.


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