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May 2, 2016Miami, FLUnited StatesDetainee Death Notifications

ICE detainee passes away at Miami hospital

MIAMI – A Salvadoran national in the custody of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) died Thursday night at Kendall Regional Medical Center in Miami. The suspected cause of death is complications as a result of alcohol withdrawal.

Jose Leonardo Lemus Rajo, 23, was transferred from the Krome Detention Center to the hospital April 26, after experiencing alcohol withdrawal symptoms using the Clinical Institute Withdrawal Assessment for Alcohol monitoring scale. At approximately 6:30 p.m. on April 28 Lemus Rajo stopped breathing. Physicians at Kendall Regional Medical Center attempted to resuscitate him but were unsuccessful and they declared him deceased at 7:15 p.m.

Consistent with the agency’s protocols, the appropriate state health and local law enforcement agencies have been advised about the death, as have the Department of Homeland Security’s Office of Inspector General and the ICE Office of Professional Responsibility. 

Lemus Rajo had been in ICE custody since April 25, following his arrest by ICE officers at the Florida Department of Corrections Probation and Parole. As is the case with all ICE detainees, Lemus Rajo underwent a medical screening shortly after coming into ICE custody, which uncovered symptoms related to alcohol abuse for which he was immediately treated.

Lemus Rajo was ordered to be removed in absentia by an immigration judge on June 7, 2011.

This notification was delayed while the Salvadoran Consulate assisted ICE in attempting to notify Lemus Rajo’s family. Lemus Rajo is the fifth detainee to pass away in ICE custody in fiscal year 2016.

Updated: 10/08/2020