San Rafael community rallies behind undocumented immigrant being detained

SAN RAFAEL, Calif. (KGO) -- A Bay Area congressman is rallying for the freedom of a Bay Area man detained by immigration officials.

It's a grassroots movement that has gained a ton of support, including the community in San Rafael.

Undocumented immigrant Hugo Mejia, a husband and father of three is being detained after trying to show up to a construction job.

Mr. Mejia's children went to Venetia Valley Elementary in San Rafael, and now the school and neighboring synagogue are pushing to get Mejia released and in front of a judge before he's deported.

Mejia's wife, Yadira Munguia, says on May 3rd her husband and a coworker showed up to Travis Air Force Base to do some dry wall work at a hospital and he never came home.

"She's very afraid to be here alone with her children," Munguia said.

According to Congressman Jared Huffman, Mejia's only offense is showing up to work.

"He was asked to present some ID; he presented a valid CA driver's license. They ran his taxpayer ID

Number - a valid number against their database and it came up that he was undocumented," Huffman said.

Air force base security contacted immigration customs enforcement and now Mejia is being held at Rio Cosumnes Correctional Center near Sacremento.

"Mr. Mejia is being detained in prison conditions with violent criminals. He is a law abiding, upstanding member of this community," Huffman said.

In 2001, Mejia was caught trying to illegally cross the U.S. Mexico border and as a result has been placed in expedited deportation proceedings.

Congressman Huffman says they are appealing to ice to try and give Mr. Mejia an opportunity for due process before he's sent even farther away from his family.

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