Allen B. West

21-year-old store clerk fatally shot by illegal facing deportation

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First of all, the victim was white, so you’re not going to hear much about this.

Secondly, the shooter was an illegal immigrant from Mexico who came to this country when he was just 14 years old (a DREAMer!). He’s 29 now, but never attended school in the U.S. and apparently never went beyond a fifth-grade education. However, he did manage to marry and have two children.

But I’m getting ahead of the story.

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According to AZCentral.com, Apolinar Altamirano went into a QT convenience store in Mesa at 4 a.m. last Thursday. He dropped a jar of change on the counter and demanded the clerk, 21-year-old Grant Ronnebeck, give him a pack of cigarettes.

Altamirano thought Ronnebeck was taking too long, pulled out a gun and shot him point blank in the face, killing him on the spot.

The “graveyard shift” proved only too true for Ronnebeck.

AZCentral.com says “Altamirano was facing deportation proceedings but had been released from federal custody on bond. Federal immigration authorities launched the proceedings two years ago against Apolinar Altamirano, but he was released on a $10,000 bond shortly after his conviction on a burglary charge. The latest order was served on Altamirano on Jan. 19, three days before he shot Ronnebeck.”

“Altamirano had pleaded guilty in 2012 to a reduced charge of facilitation to commit burglary and placed on two years of supervised probation, even though he had claimed ties to the Mexican Mafia after entering a woman’s apartment in Mesa after Mesa police had arrested her boyfriend on drug charges, court records show.”

“After reviewing his immigration and criminal history, which showed only this conviction, ICE determined that under applicable law, Mr. Altamirano was eligible for bond. Mr. Altamirano posted a $10,000 bond on January 7, 2013. Mr. Altamirano’s removal case was still pending with the immigration courts at the time of his most recent arrest.”

As AZCentral.com reports, “Jessica Vaughan, director of policy studies for the Center for Immigration Studies, said the case is an example of an Obama administration policy where ICE sets a very high standard for which undocumented immigrants are held in custody and is more apt to release people awaiting immigration court hearings.”

“There’s no logical reason for ICE to let people like that out of custody instead of sending them home,” Vaughan said. “If they had kept him in custody they could have deported him much for efficiently.”

Yes, but perhaps if we would secure the damn borders, we would have prevented him from ever getting here in the first place, and 21-year-old Grant Ronnebeck would still be alive.

[Note: this story was written by Michele Hickford, Editor-in-Chief]

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