USA border agents detain Mexican girl being rushed to hospital

Mary Alice Hernandez was charged with assault for getting into a fight with a teenager

Rosamaria Hernandez, who has lived in the USA since she was 3 months old, was traveling from Laredo to the Driscoll Children's Hospital in Corpus Christi for the surgery when she was threatened with deportation after crossing a Customs and Border Protection checkpoint, her mother, Felipa Delacruz, told the Corpus Christi Caller-Times.

Aurora Cantu, Hernandez's cousin, rode in the ambulance with her. Mohammad Abdollahi, an organiser with DreamActivist, an immigrant rights group, said that Border Patrol agents took her to a shelter for child immigrants in San Antonio that has a contract with the federal government. It's also hard to understand why a child would be placed in a shelter when she has sponsors in the United States willing to take care of her.

The family's Los Angeles-based attorney Alex Galvez said that after the hospital released Rosamaria, she was taken into custody and transferred to a San Antonio, Texas, shelter for kids for three weeks. During a teleconference Thursday, her family's attorney, Leticia Gonzalez, said the girl has the "mentality of a child closer to 4 or 5 years old" and "has difficulty understanding what is taking place".

When agents discovered that Hernandez was undocumented, at the checkpoint en route to the hospital, they allowed her to continue on, but followed her and her family member the rest of the way.

A U.S. Customs and Border Protection spokesperson confirmed that Rosa Maria's ambulance was stopped upon approaching the primary inspection lane of the Freer Border Patrol Checkpoint on Highway 59, east of Laredo. It also states that given her medical condition, psychological needs, and requirements, it would be best for the child if she stays her family's care and not that of strangers.

Rosemarie Hernandez, 10, lies in a Corpus Christi hospital bed after.

Leticia Gonzalez, the attorney, says it's been hard explaining to RosaMaria Hernandez, who has the mentality of a 6-year-old, why she can't go home.

Rosamaria's mother said she brought her from Mexico when she was a baby in a bid to ensure she would receive necessary medical treatment for her condition.

'Per the immigration laws of the United States, once medically cleared she will be processed accordingly.

'What is uncommon, is the Border Patrol or Immigration Customs Enforcement taking such an interest in a case involving a 10-year-old girl requiring immediate medical attention.

"She told me she is OK", her mother, Felipa De La Cruz, said through a translator. "(The Department of Homeland Security) should focus its resources elsewhere".

Immigration arrests were up more than 40 percent from mid-January through early September over the same time period in 2016, according to ICE data. But attempts to have Rosa Maria released to her cousin or to her grandfather, a legal resident of 45 years, have failed.

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