Lawsuit against Border Patrol to move forward
Associated Press/Peninsula Daily News 8-28-12
SEATTLE — A lawsuit by American Civil Liberties Union lawsuit over traffic stops by U.S. Border Patrol agents on the North Olympic Peninsula is moving forward.
Federal District Court Judge Benjamin Settle denied on Monday a motion by the government to dismiss the lawsuit.
In April, the ACLU and the Northwest Immigrant Rights Project sued the Border Patrol seeking to bar agents from making traffic stops, saying people are being pulled over and questioned for the way they look and without reasonable suspicion.
The lawsuit stems from tensions between immigrants and the expanded presence of Border Patrol agents on the Peninsula, which shares no land border with Canada.
The ACLU and the Northwest Immigrant Rights Project filed the lawsuit on behalf of three Peninsula residents who have been stopped by Border Patrol agents.
Jose Sanchez and Ismael Ramos Contreras of Forks, and Ernest Grimes of Neah Bay, are the complainants in the lawsuit, which was filed in federal District Court in Seattle.
Border Patrol spokesman Richard Sinks said at the time that U.S. Customs and Border Protection “strictly prohibits” profiling on the basis of race or religion.