Illegal Immigrant Detained after Delivering Pizza to Army Base Charged with Assaulting Wife

Pablo Villavicencio (Pix11 via YouTube)

An illegal immigrant who gained national notoriety after he was detained while delivering a pizza to an army base in June has been arrested and charged with criminal mischief after allegedly assaulting his wife.

Pablo Villavicencio, who was exempted from deportation by a judge after his cause was taken up by prominent immigration activists, was arrested early Monday and taken to the Nassau County Detention Center. He allegedly pushed his wife against a wall and slapped her before confiscating her phone to prevent a call for help, according to police documents reviewed by a local NBC affiliate.

U.S. District Judge Paul Crotty, who ruled in June that Villavicencio could remain in the U.S. while exhausting all attempts to gain citizenship, praised him as a “model citizen” in that decision.

“Although he stayed in the United States unlawfully and is currently subject to a final order of removal, he has otherwise been a model citizen,” Crotty wrote. “He has no criminal history. . . . He has paid his taxes. And he has worked diligently to provide for his family.”

In responding to the government’s argument that Villavicencio should be subject to deportation, Crotty argued that doing so would not be in the national interest.

“I mean, is there any concept of justice here or are we just doing this because we want to?” the judge asked. “Why do we want to enforce the order? It makes no difference in terms of the larger issues facing the country.”

New York governor Andrew Cuomo attacked Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) for “cruelly” detaining Villavicencio “for no legitimate reason” during his brief detention in June.

Senator Kirsten Gillibrand of New York called Villavicencio’s detention “shameful” and used the incident as a cudgel to bash the Trump administration’s zero-tolerance immigration-enforcement policy, which she said was “inhumane, plain and simple” and did “not make our country safer.”

ICE officials confirmed to NBC that Villavicencio will not be deported while there are criminal charges pending against him.

Jack Crowe — Jack Crowe is a news writer at National Review Online.

Most Popular

Law & the Courts

The Second(-Class) Amendment

Editor’s Note: The following is the fourth in a series of articles in which Mr. Yoo and Mr. Phillips will lay out a course of constitutional restoration, pointing out areas where the Supreme Court has driven the Constitution off its rails and the ways the current Court can put it back on track. The first entry ... Read More

The Brexit Crisis

After what seem like years of a phony war, British and European Union negotiators finally agreed on the terms of Britain’s departure from the EU earlier this week, and Theresa May announced it in the House of Commons. The deal covers more than 500 pages of legal and bureaucratic prose, and few but the ... Read More

Friends of Elmer

Do you know what scares an American outdoorsman more than a grizzly bear? Twitter. In the late summer and early autumn, the hunting world had its eyes on the courts: The Trump administration had issued new guidance that would permit the hunting of brown bears (popularly known as grizzly bears), including in ... Read More