The more violent crimes aliens commit in sanctuary cities, the more tortured those cities’ defenses of noncooperation with Immigration and Customs Enforcement become.

In sanctuary Montgomery County, Md., 18-year-old Guatemalan Henry Sanchez-Milian and 17-year-old Salvadoran Jose Montano raped their 14-year-old classmate. Despite their ages, Sanchez-Milian, who has an active alien removal case pending, and Montano were assigned to a freshman class with their victim because neither alien speaks English.

Sanchez-Milian and Montano are beneficiaries of former President Barack Obama’s catch-and-release policy; aliens apprehended at the border are given a notice to appear in immigration court, and then released into the general population, rarely to be seen again.

The Montgomery County police report, posted online, has the sickening details that include a shocking description of the horrific rape. The report states that the victim repeatedly rejected the aliens’ demands for sex before the perpetrators pushed her into a bathroom and began a series of brutal attacks.

Nevertheless, Sanchez-Milian’s lawyer, Andrew Jezic, said that based on the evidence he’s seen, his client is innocent. Jezic added that the rape “appears to be a consensual encounter.”

State legislator Maricé Morales, D-Montgomery County, who sponsored a House of Delegates bill that that would make Maryland a sanctuary state incredulously insisted that Sanchez-Milian and Montano’s immigration status has nothing to do with the rape.

Less than a week after the rape, the House passed the bill — the Maryland Law Enforcement and Trust Act — by an 83-55 margin. After its passage, Morales, a lawyer, erroneously tweeted that her legislation would provide constitutional protections to illegal immigrants even though the Constitution doesn’t apply to aliens.

Statewide sanctuary status would put Maryland’s 5.5 million residents at extreme risk. Central American aliens have overwhelmed Maryland in general and Montgomery County specifically.

MS-13, a bloodthirsty transnational gang with Salvadoran roots, has been a particular ICE concern. Since the early 2000s, MS-13 gang presence in and around the Beltway has dramatically increased. After carrying out a string of high-profile machete attacks and murders, MS-13 became an ICE priority.

In Maryland alone, the U.S. Attorney’s Office has convicted 42 MS-13 gang members. In FY 2010, the U.S. Attorneys’ Statistics Report concluded that illegal immigration provides an initial foothold that criminal elements, including organized crime syndicates, use to engage in myriad illicit activities ranging from immigration document fraud and migrant smuggling to human trafficking. Short version: fewer illegal immigrants, less crime.

The young girl’s rape is a crime that didn’t have to happen. Sanchez-Milian and Montano should have been returned at the border. Instead, they were set free, and a horrific but preventable rape occurred.

Enough! Americans are fed up with counter-intuitive defenses of sanctuary cites, and with advocates like Morales and Jezic who advance them.

Luckily for Maryland’s law-abiding citizens, Gov. Larry Hogan vowed to veto Morales’ sanctuary state bill should it pass the state Senate, and get to his desk. In his statement, he said that the “brutal and violent rape” outraged him, and that the public has a right to know the details surrounding how such a tragedy took place in a public school.

Hogan demanded that Montgomery County officials fully cooperate with federal officials.

Hogan has set a noble example for other governors that the safety of citizens and legal residents is more important than a politically correct, life-threatening defense of criminal aliens.

— Joe Guzzardi is a senior writing fellow for Californians for Population Stabilization (CAPS) who now lives in Pittsburgh. He can be reached at, or follow him on Twitter: @joeguzzardi19. Click here to read previous columns. The opinions expressed are his own.

Joe Guzzardi is an Institute for Sound Public Policy analyst who has written about immigration for more than 30 years. A California native who now lives in Pittsburgh, he can be reached at The opinions expressed are his own.