An Ohio woman, a mother of four, was scheduled to be deported on Tuesday after authorities discovered her immigration status during a traffic stop last month.
Beatriz Morelos, who has lived in Painesville, Ohio, just east of Cleveland, for nearly two decades, was arrested for driving without a license last week, according to city records, which is when officials discovered that she has been living in the country illegally and turned her over to Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
She is scheduled to be deported on Tuesday to Nuevo Laredo, Mexico, which is in an area that the U.S. Department of State warns travelers to avoid “due to violent crime, including homicide, armed robbery, carjacking, extortion and sexual assault,” according to its website.
Morelos’ husband, Jose DeJesus, said he feels his family’s worst nightmare has come true.
“For years, this has been her worst fear, and it’s coming true,” he told ABC’s Cleveland affiliate, WEWS on Monday. “She said that she’s very afraid, that she doesn’t want to go back to a country where she’s coming from, because her life is at risk over there.”
ICYMI: Beatriz Morelos will be deported to one of the most dangerous places in Mexico. https://t.co/psjQOZXAK9— News 5 Cleveland (@WEWS) August 1, 2017
Morelos, 33, was awaiting deportation at an ICE detention center in Tiffin, Ohio, as of Monday evening, but her attorney, Elizabeth Ford, said she is working to get the U.S. to rethink its decision.
Ford said she is trying to get ICE to grant Morelos a stay, which she admits is difficult because of the way the country’s new immigration laws are written.
“It is absolutely impossible for people in her situation and in many other people’s situations to correct their status with how the laws are written now,” Ford told WEWS on Monday. “If she was able to correct her status, she absolutely would have, just like many of the other people would.”
Ford said that Morelos does not have a criminal history and that she would be separated from her four young children, who are U.S. citizens, and her husband, who’s in the U.S. on a visa.
“I can’t imagine putting a mother, who’s in her mid-30s with four U.S. citizen children, there alone,” Ford told WEWS. “She has no family in Mexico. Her entire family is in the United States. It’s absolutely horrific to think that this is where this young woman is going.”