WICHITA, Kan. — A Mexican woman was sentenced in federal court Monday to time served for unlawfully possessing a firearm connected to a Kansas homicide.
This sentence resulted from an investigation by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO), the Salina (Kansas) Police Department, and the Saline County (Kansas) Sheriff’s Office.
Azucena Garcia-Ferniza, 22, a Salina resident, spent about 15 months in jail while awaiting trial. She pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court in Wichita to one count of possessing a firearm while unlawfully in the United States. In her plea, she admitted that on May 7, 2015, she unlawfully possessed a Glock .45-caliber pistol. Garcia-Ferniza entered the United States on a visitor’s visa, which expired in February 1998. She has since been living illegally in the United States.
In July 2016, Garcia-Ferniza was sentenced in Saline County District Court to18 months on probation for attempting to hide the gun that killed 17-year-old Allie Saum. The gun belonged to Macio D. Palacio Jr., Garcia-Ferniza’s boyfriend. Saum was killed by gunfire when Palacio fired at a pickup he mistakenly believed was being driven by rival gang members.
Palacio was convicted earlier this year in Saline County District Court and sentenced to more than 50 years in state prison for the killing.
Garcia-Ferniza will be transferred to ICE custody and placed in removal proceedings to Mexico.