Leading a 13-state coalition, Attorney General Ken Paxton today filed a friend-of-the-court brief with the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals in support of Indiana’s right to defend and enforce its sanctuary cities law.

Late last year, Indiana Attorney General Curtis Hill filed a motion to intervene in a settlement between the Marion County Sheriff’s Office and the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), which prevents local law enforcement officials from complying with federal immigration law and detainer requests. Marion is the largest county in the state and includes the city of Indianapolis.

“The settlement between Marion County and the ACLU is an attempt to get around a state law they don’t agree with,” Attorney General Paxton said. “The policy agreed to by the county obstructs the federal government’s ability to enforce the nation’s immigration laws, and it puts the safety of police officers and the public at risk. Indiana’s sanctuary cities law should be fully enforced.”  

Indiana contends that its interests were not properly represented during legal proceedings for the policy developed between the sheriff’s office and the ACLU. The state’s sanctuary cities law prohibits any town, city or county from having a policy that restricts cooperation with federal immigration officers or limits the enforcement of federal immigration laws.

In Texas, Senate Bill 4 affirms the right and duty of law enforcement agencies throughout the state to detain individuals pursuant to the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement federal detainer program. Earlier this week, virtually all of Senate Bill 4 was upheld by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit.

Attorney General Paxton was joined on the brief by the attorneys general of Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Louisiana, Michigan, Nebraska, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina and West Virginia, along with Kentucky Governor Matt Bevin and Maine Governor Paul LePage.

View the brief