Earlier this week in Los Angeles, Romulo Avelica-Gonzalez, an immigrant, was arrested. His daughter, 13-year-old Fatima Avelica—whom Avelica-Gonzalez had just dropped off at school—sobbed while recording the arrest from the backseat of a car, watching her father be put in a law enforcement vehicle.
“Don’t cry, mama, don’t cry,” a woman says in the background of the video. “We have to be strong.”
Avelica-Gonzalez had a 2009 DUI conviction and outstanding deportation order from 2014, according to BuzzFeed.
The government has more aggressively pursued deportation of immigrants since President Donald Trump was inaugurated in January. Trump has signed executive orders in an attempt to limit the number of immigrants in the United States.
Avelica-Gonzalez has been in the United States for 20 years and has four children. Another of Avelica-Gonzalez’s daughters spoke with KABC.
“It’s really hard what we’re going through,” Brenda Avelica said. “I never thought we’d actually go through something like this. It’s terrible to feel and see your family being broken apart.”
ABC News received a statement from U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).
“Mr. Avelica was targeted for arrest because relevant databases indicate he has multiple prior criminal convictions, including a DUI in 2009, as well an outstanding order of removal dating back to 2014,” ICE said. “After conducting surveillance to confirm his identity, the officers arrested Mr. Avelica during a vehicle stop in the 3200 block of Pasadena Avenue, approximately a half mile from the charter school described in the related social media post.”
Avelica-Gonzalez is scheduled to be deported to Mexico.