Activists rally for Hartford mother in ICE custody, facing deportation

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Activists rallied in front of the federal building Wednesday morning to keep one Hartford mother from being deported.

34-year-old Wayzaro Walton is now in ICE custody after she was detained Tuesday during her ISAP appointment. 

Walton was brought to the U.S. with her parents from England when she was only 3-years-old and has lived in Hartford since 1987. 

I am so sad. Taz is so sad. Our child is so sad. This is ridiculous, said Walton’s wife, Tamika Ferguson, with tears streaming down her face.

Related: Protesters rally in Hartford after mother set to be deported back to England

Walton later got legal status, yet ICE is still looking to deport her.

This is a woman who came to the United States as a child, who is a permanent legal resident of the United States, who is married to an American citizen, explained Mayor Luke Bronin (D-Hartford) at the rally.

ICE is now trying to deport her because she committed a misdemeanor back in 2011, but the state Board of Pardons and Paroles granted her a pardon. In most states, it is not a board that grants pardons, it’s the governor, so ICE won’t recognize it.

That because we have that system, instead of the sole discretion of the governor, that our pardons don’t count, Bronin said.

Related: Community rallies to keep Hartford woman from being deported

For Tamika Ferguson and their 15-year-old daughter, Walton’s deportation would mean tearing apart a family.

We need to do something. We are going to do something, Ferguson said. We are going to make something happen. We are going to make a change. We need that. Everyone needs that.

Her lawyers are working on legal options. They have not heard about a firm date for when Walton could be deported back to England.  

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