Two recent stories bring another reminder about the potential of preventing crime and/or nabbing criminals by requiring the use of E-Verify.
The first, and higher profile story, involved a criminal illegal immigrant (with multiple felony convictions over the years) who enjoyed the use of the revolving door at the border. Unfortunately, Roberto Miramontes Roman’s most recent foray into this country resulted in the murder of Millard County Sheriff’s Deputy Josie Fox: Deputy’s murder highlights Utah’s illegal immigration problem (his rap sheet is available at the link).
Mr. Roman’s accomplice, Ruben Chavez Reyes, also appears to be here illegally (based on the immigration detainer placed on him). However, his involvement in the murder remains unclear at this time and I haven’t seen any reports on his history as everything is focused on Roman.
The other, lesser known story, involves the capture of a fugitive sex offender, David Lynn Young (aka Richard Smith and David Michael Smith) who’s been on the run for 10 years (good job, US Marshals).
What does this have to do with E-Verify? E-Verify is a free Federal online database for employers to verify the identity of their employees. Using a stolen social security number (SSN) with an E-Verify employer would, at the very least, deny you a job and make life on the run much more difficult.
Both criminals highlighted above had jobs. The Roman did not have a valid SSN and the only way for an illegal immigrant to get a job with a legitimate employer is to engage in identity theft for a SSN. Besides the drug trade, Mr. Roman made his living working at a dairy. Mr. Young, on the other hand, did have a valid SSN but couldn’t use it in order to evade law enforcement. Ergo:
…authorities believe Young used multiple names and Social Security numbers as well as family support to conceal his whereabouts from law enforcement.
Thus far, it remains unclear if Mr. Young was caught because his false SSN raised a red flag. If so, however, it would not be the first time a pedophile fugitive in Utah had been caught by an alert citizen verifying identity.
Certainly, no one definitively knows if E-Verify would have stopped or caught these specific criminals, but it certainly would raised the probability of preventing crime and capturing fugitives. If anything, it would make it harder for criminals to hide in broad daylight.
Thus far, the State Legislature has refused to address the well documented identity theft for employment problem and, as the former US Attorney notes:
…Utah is a prime target for illegal immigrants because they feel there’s less of a focus on the issue in the state.
Apparently, that also applies to fugitives looking for work here.