Supporters rally in bid for father's release from ICE custody

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Supporters rallied Friday in support of an undocumented Mexican immigrant living in the Bronx who has been in Immigration and Customs Enforcement custody since last month.

Family, friends and community members gathered at Our Lady of Refuge Church in Fordham to protest for the release of Ramon Garcia-Ponce, chanting and singing in unison. 

They say Garcia-Ponce is chronically ill and not receiving medical attention while in ICE custody. Family members tell News 12 he was diagnosed with diabetes and had undergone brain surgery, but that he still supported his family financially as a vendor by selling flowers, churros and candy.

Surveillance video from Jan. 15 shows ICE agents knock on the door at the family's apartment early in the morning. Family members claim ICE agents deceivingly identified themselves as police.

Garcia-Ponce's daughter says they revealed they were ICE after taking his fingerprints. Garcia-Ponce's wife, two daughters and 4-month-old granddaughter were home when he was arrested.

Alongside the protesters was the Northwest Bronx Community and Clergy Coalition. The group says top ICE officials in New York have the authority to release Garcia-Ponce from detention so he can receive his care.

News 12 has reached out to ICE for comment but has not heard back.

 

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