WCAV-WVAW-WAHU | Charlottesville, Virginia | News

Va. Preparing for Arizona-like Reaction to Immigrant Crime

August 9, 2010

In Arizona, the shooting death of a rancher blew the lid off simmering anger over border security and helped solidify support for a tough new immigration law.

A similar eruption threatens in Virginia following the death of a Catholic nun in a car accident in Prince William County involving a man in the country illegally and accused of drunken driving.

Sister Denise Mosier was killed and two other nuns were critically injured in the August 1 crash.

The man charged in the case, 23-year-old Carlos A. Martinelly Montano of Bolivia, had two prior drunken driving convictions. But federal officers released him both times while he awaited hearings.

The day after the crash, Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli issued an advisory opinion concluding that police have authority to inquire into the immigration status of any person stopped or arrested.

Prince William County's Board of Supervisors chairman Corey Stewart is criticizing the Obama administration's immigration policies. He also says the tragedy illustrates the need for Virginia to toughen its drunken driving laws.

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