Experts concerned Contra Costa sheriff tipping off ICE by posting release dates of detained immigrants

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RICHMOND — The Contra Costa County Sheriff’s Office has started publishing the release dates of inmates on its website, including undocumented immigrants, using a loophole experts feel is an indirect communication with ICE.

The state’s sanctuary laws usually aim to prevent a local law enforcement agency from notifying Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) of an inmate’s release date. The sheriff’s office only started publishing inmates’ release dates on its website in mid-February.

“They found a loophole. They are being very clever,” said Peter Scheer, board member and open government lawyer with the First Amendment Coalition. “They are exploiting an exception in the law that was put there to avoid withholding of information that would normally be public under the Public Records Act.”

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