An undocumented Buda woman who had been in Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) custody following her arrest for an October 2017 incident was scheduled to be deported earlier this week.
Janelie Rodriguez, 26, was ordered to be deported to Mexico by a judge after months of detention at the South Texas Detention Center in Pearsall.
According to Mano Amiga co-founder Karen Munoz, Rodriguez’ application for asylum was denied in court, despite the harsh conditions her family says she faces in Mexico. Janeth Rodriguez, Janelie’s mother, said in September her family has no relatives in Mexico and knows fewer people who could help her daughter’s mental health issues.
Rodriguez emigrated with her family to the U.S. when she was two years old and has lived in the country since then.
In January, Rodriguez was arrested after a felony warrant was issued for an October 2017 incident. Rodriguez allegedly bit a Buda Police officer who was assisting during a mental health episode at her home.
Rodriguez was formally diagnosed with mental health issues when she was 20 years old, according to family members. The felony charge was eventually dropped by Judge Bill Henry in 2018.
Hays County authorities, however, turned Rodriguez over to ICE Custody in July. She was then transferred to the facility in Pearsall soon after. Following her detainment, Rodriguez’ family, along with Mano Amiga, fought to get her released from custody. Concerns were raised after family members alleged Rodriguez did not receive necessary medication for her mental and medical conditions while in ICE custody.
In September, Rodriguez’ attorney Chito Vela filed for refugee status after ICE put a hold on her bond release.
Rodriguez’ current condition is unknown, and her deportation date has not been released to Hays Free Press at this time.