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July 16, 2020New Orleans, LA, United StatesDetainee Death Notifications

Guatemalan man in ICE custody passes away in Louisiana

NEW ORLEANS — A Guatemalan man in the custody of U.S. Immigration and Enforcement (ICE) at the Catahoula Correctional Center who had been hospitalized at a Monroe, Louisiana, hospital since February 26, passed away on July 15.

Luis Sanchez-Perez, 46, AKA Mauricio Hernandez-Cabrera, 52, was pronounced dead at 11:45 a.m. local time by medical professionals at the Ochsner LSU Monroe Medical Center where he had been receiving inpatient care since February 26, 2020. The preliminary cause of death was ruled by hospital medical staff to be septic shock from pseudomonas leading to cardiopulmonary arrest.

Consistent with the agency’s protocols, the appropriate agencies have been notified about the death, including the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) Office of Inspector General (OIG), and the ICE Office of Professional Responsibility (OPR). Additionally, ICE has notified the Guatemalan consulate and Sanchez-Perez’s next of kin.

ICE is firmly committed to the health and welfare of all those in its custody and is undertaking a comprehensive agency-wide review of this incident, as it does in all such cases. Fatalities in ICE custody, statistically, are exceedingly rare and occur at a fraction of the national average for the U.S. detained population.

The agency’s comprehensive review will be conducted by ICE senior leadership, including Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) and the Office of the Principal Legal Advisor (OPLA).

On January 29, 2020, ICE Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) deportation officers took twice-removed unlawfully present Guatemalan national Sanchez-Perez into custody following his release from local criminal custody in Hamilton County, Tennessee, pursuant to his arrest by local authorities January 25 for driving under the influence.

Sanchez-Perez was previously removed from the U.S. to Guatemala in July 1998 and November 2001. He subsequently illegally reentered the U.S. after removal, which is a felony act under federal law.

At the time of his death, Sanchez-Perez was awaiting reinstatement of his removal order to Guatemala.

ICE’s Health Service Corps (IHSC) ensures the provision of necessary medical care services as required by ICE Performance-Based National Detention Standards and based on the medical needs of the detainee. Comprehensive medical care is provided from the moment detainees arrive and throughout the entirety of their stay. All ICE detainees receive medical, dental and mental health intake screening within 12 hours of arriving at each detention facility, a full health assessment within 14 days of entering ICE custody or arrival at a facility, and access to daily sick call and 24-hour emergency care. Pursuant to our commitment to the welfare of those in the agency’s custody, ICE annually spends more than $269 million on the spectrum of healthcare services provided to detainees.