Senator Ernst Remembers Sarah Root, A Victim of Illegal Alien Crime
February 01, 2019, 09:10 PM
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On January 31, 2016, Sarah Root was killed by drunk driving illegal alien Edwin Mejia. She was just 21, and had graduated from Bellevue University the day before.

On the three-year anniversary of Sarah’s death, Senator Joni Ernst spoke on the Senate floor about the preventable loss, as well as a reintroduction of Sarah’s Law, proposed legislation that would prohibit federal immigration officials from releasing any illegal alien who has committed a violent crime against an American citizen.

On Third Anniversary of Her Death, Senator Ernst Re-Introduces Sarah’s Law, Senator Ernst Press Release, Jan 31 2019

Ernst: “We have an obligation to the Root family, and to the American people, to ensure that no person falls victim to this injustice again”

WASHINGTON – On January 31, 2016, the night of her graduation, Sarah Root, a twenty-one year-old Iowan from Council Bluffs, was struck and killed in Omaha, Neb., by Edwin Mejia, who entered the country illegally and was driving drunk – three times over the legal limit.

Today, on the third anniversary of her death, Senator Joni Ernst (R-IA), along with Senators Chuck Grassley (R-IA), Ben Sasse (R-NE), Deb Fischer (R-NE) and 11 of their colleagues, re-introduced legislation in honor of Sarah, to allow federal law enforcement to detain illegal immigrants criminally charged with killing or seriously injuring another person.

“It is wholly unacceptable that someone who is here illegally and is responsible for the death of another human being is not considered an enforcement priority nor is detained by ICE. We have an obligation to the Root family, and to the American people, to ensure that no person falls victim to this injustice again.  Sarah’s Law brings us one step closer to restoring justice in our broken immigration system by allowing ICE to detain and hold these criminals accountable,” said Senator Joni Ernst (R-IA).

“The tragic death of Sarah Root three years ago and the ongoing search for her killer underscore the serious attention border security and immigration enforcement require in America. Sarah’s life was cut short by an undocumented immigrant who disregarded the rule of law and decided to get behind the wheel after drinking.  The Obama Administration refused to take custody of Sarah’s killer because it didn’t consider him a priority, allowing him to disappear into the shadows. The Roots have been robbed of their daughter, and at least for now, they have been robbed of justice.  Our legislation, named in Sarah’s memory, will ensure that those who harm or kill Americans will be taken into custody and removed while also ensuring that victims and their families get the information they deserve from the government as they pursue justice,” said Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA).

“Edwin Mejia’s mugshot shouldn’t be on a most wanted poster — Edwin Mejia should be in jail, serving hard time for the life he took and the pain he left behind,” said Senator Ben Sasse (R-NE). “Sarah’s Law is common-sense legislation that Sarah and her family deserve to have signed into law. Congress should waste no time sending this legislation to the President’s desk for his signature.” . . .