SJ officials call for action following homicide arrest of suspect in country illegally

There has been a call to action from law enforcement and local leaders in San Jose on Wednesday.

They're pointing to a series of disjointed policies and procedures that allowed a felon, in the country illegally, to allegedly commit another crime. Carlos Arevalo Carranza is accused of killing Bambi Larson in San Jose. And while they all agree the system is a problem, they don't agree on who should make changes.

Following the homicide arrest of Carlos Arevalo Carranza, there has been finger pointing and frustration.

The President of the San Jose Police Officers Association says the stabbing of Bambi Larson in her San Jose home never should have happened because Arevalo Carranza should have been deported long ago.

Paul Kelly, President of the San Jose Police Officers Association says, "It makes me sick. Then I get angry."

Angry, he says, because Arevalo Carranza, a Salvadoran national, was in the country illegally, yet had a long history of arrests in California for burglary, drugs, and in 2017 false imprisonment.

Kelly says he, "Tried to kidnap and potentially rape a woman at a church. Serious, serious allegations, that the second he was arrested, he should have been deported."

In fact, ICE says they have lodged at least 10 "detainers" for Arevalo Carranza with local law enforcement agencies since 2016. They say the nine up until now have been ignored. 

In a statement, Erik Bonnar with ICE says "how many more people have to be killed or injured before California lawmakers will open discussions to revise the state policy..."

That policy, according to Santa Clara County, prohibits them from honoring the ICE detainers. But they say warrants are a different story.

James Williams, Santa Clara County Counsel says, "The one agency that doesn't want to use warrants seems to be ICE. ICE should have gotten a warrant here. They could have gotten a warrant here and the county's policy and practice has always been to honor warrants."

But without one, county officials say their hands are tied. They will not hold a felon, and they will not actively notify ICE when one is being released from custody.

Today, several local officials called on the county to change that.

San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo says, "No one is urging the county to detain a single individual for a minute longer than a constitution allows. All we are saying collectively, the police chief, the sheriff, the DA, is that a phone call should be placed."

The Police Officers Association says something needs to change. And if it doesn't, they fear more Bambi Larsons will be failed by the system.

Kelly says, "They can be and are responsible for these acts in my eyes, if they don't fix it after seeing this."

Arevalo Carranza is set to make his first court appearance Thursday.