Two recent high-profile arrestees in Charlottesville are not United States citizens, according to officials at the Albemarle Charlottesville Regional Jail.
On April 1, 2017 Charlottesville Police arrested Erick G. Banegaz, who was charged with carnal knowledge of a child, as described in a police department media release:
The Charlottesville Police Department received a report from the victim’s mother on March 23, 2017 advising she felt that her 14 year old daughter was having an inappropriate relationship with a twenty year old male identified as Erick G. Banegaz. The relationship was reported to have occurred between December 2016 and March 2017.
The case was assigned to one of our detectives and through his investigation probable cause was established to charge Banegaz with Carnal Knowledge of a Child between 13 and 15 years of age (Va Code 18.2-63). Banegaz was arrested on 03/31/2017 and is currently being held at the Albemarle Charlottesville Regional Jail.
Banegaz, Erick Geonavie: W/M; 20 years of age; resident of Charlottesville, Va.
According to staff at the ACRJ, Benegaz is not a US Citizen and was born in Honduras.
David Antonio Munoz-Perez was arrested by Charlottesville Police on April 11, 2017 and charged with attempted abduction of a child. A police department media release depicts the crime and circumstance:
On 04/10/2017 at approximately 4:10pm, officers with the Charlottesville Police Department responded to the 100 block of Alderman Road for the report of an attempted abduction of a minor from a preschool. The initial call from the reporting party advised that a male subject had attempted to grab one of the children from the playground area but ran off towards Ivy Road when yelled at by one of the employees of the preschool.
Upon arrival, officers made contact with the reporting party and were given a description of the suspect. Officers searched the surrounding area and were able to locate a male matching the description of the suspect at the 7-11 convenience store in the 2000 block of Ivy Road.
The male was identified as David Antonio Munoz-Perez, 46 years of age and a resident of Albemarle County.
Munoz-Perez was arrested and charged with Attempted Abduction (Va. Code 18.2- 47, F) as well as Public Swearing or Intoxication (Va Code 18.2-388). Munoz-Perez is currently being held at the Albemarle Charlottesville Regional Jail.
Jail personnel stated that Munoz-Perez was born in El Salvador and is a citizen of that country, not of the United States.
In both instances, a Charlottesville Police spokesman claimed no knowledge of the arrestee’s citizenship status.
Given the serious, potentially violent nature of these crimes, Mayor Michael Signer’s recent failed call for Charlottesville to become a “sanctuary” city —and City Council’s unanimous declaration of Charlottesville as a “welcoming city”— should appear increasingly asinine to any rational observer.
Local mainstream media is complicit in these crimes with their “don’t ask, don’t tell” approach to reporting on the immigration status of accused criminals.
And local law enforcement’s refusal to even make basic “citizenship” inquiries of arrestees borders on professional and constitutional malfeasance.
These entities share responsibility—along with the perpetrators—for the suffering of the victims and for any future crimes that could have been averted by the reasonable exercise of due diligence and respect for the rule of law.