Editor’s Note – The Illegals Crime Report looks at crimes reported in the United States at the hands of those listed as illegal or undocumented.
Week of June 12-18
This issue of our crime report focuses on one illegal immigrant and how sanctuary policies that prohibit local law enforcement from working with federal immigration control cost a man his life.
Ian Eckles, 41, of Kent, WA, had plans to go hunting with his friends. When he didn’t show up, his companions were not worried, saying he often went out alone the first day and then joined up with the group later. But as Monday rolled around and their friend did not appear for work, they became worried and called the authorities.
Search parties combed the area where he was last seen but were coming up empty with any clues until one person noticed a man driving Eckles’ SUV. The situation went from serious to grave as the implications of what it meant for someone to be driving his vehicle sank in. What followed was a 23-day manhunt for Jorge Alcantara-Gonzalez, 34, an illegal alien who’d had numerous encounters with police in the past.
After recovering Eckles’ stolen SUV, the Kittitas County Sheriff’s Department said in a press release that, “Forensic and circumstantial evidence found in Mr. Eckles’ vehicle leads Law Enforcement to believe Mr. Eckles was a victim of homicide.”
After the longest manhunt in the county’s history, police responded to a call by a woman who claimed to see someone fitting the suspect’s description inside one of her neighbor’s homes. Alcantara-Gonzalez was taken into custody without incidence, but Eckles still remains listed as missing. Authorities had been searching for the illegal immigrant for outstanding warrants that included multiple burglary and theft charges, possession of two stolen vehicles, and theft of firearms.
Alcantara-Gonzalez’s known criminal activity started in 2003 when he entered the United States illegally. U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) returned him to Mexico on November 20, 2003, but he re-entered at least two more times. CBP again sent him to his homeland on January 8, 2009, and December 21, 2013.
Alcantara-Gonzalez once again came up on ICE’s radar in 2017, after committing crimes in Washington state. Several times, authorities captured and released him without notifying ICE, putting this dangerous person back out on the streets.
- On December 26, 2017, he was arrested by the State Patrol for driving under the influence and detained at the King County Jail. He was released a day later before ICE could collect him.
- On December 17, 2018, Alcantara-Gonzalez was arrested by the Lewis County Sheriff’s Department for failure to comply. The following day, ICE put a detainer on him, and he was transferred to King County. By December 20, 2018, ICE had lodged another detainer in the new county, but he was released without local authorities notifying the federal officers.
- December 24, 2018, the illegal immigrant was arrested by the Seattle Police Department for theft of a motor vehicle, and ICE placed a detainer on him.
- March 19, 2019, Alcantara-Gonzalez was again arrested by Seattle police for three counts of failure to comply. King County Jail ignored the detainer and released him.
- June 6, 2019, he was convicted for the stolen vehicle incident with “vehicle prowling in the second degree.” He was released without ICE being contacted.
So many times local authorities had the opportunity to work with immigration officers to keep a dangerous man away from society. If they had complied with any one of the ICE detainers, there’s a good chance Ian Eckles would not have met such a tragic fate.
Tune in next week for more on the Illegals Crime Report.
Read more from Kelli Ballard.