Illegal Immigration happens “over there” or does it? Deported Individual Caused Deadly Hit and Run in Jacksonville

In a tragic incident that took place on Beach Boulevard in Jacksonville a 28-year-old motorcyclist lost his life in a hit and run. The suspect, Edwin Rumaldo Almendares Amaya, has been identified as an illegal immigrant from Honduras who had been deported three times before the tragic homicide.

This devastating incident once again raises questions about the effectiveness of immigration enforcement and the need for stricter measures to prevent accidents such as these.

Lester Bagalihog, known as “Nicco” to his loved ones, was riding alongside his friend when they were slowing down for a red light. It was at this moment that Amaya allegedly struck Bagalihog with his vehicle and callously fled the scene. Bagalihog tragically succumbed to his injuries. The Florida Highway Patrol swiftly apprehended Amaya the following morning.

According to information obtained from Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Amaya had been deported three times in the past. The first deportation occurred in April 2009, followed by subsequent removals in February 2013 and September 2017. His presence in the United States after these deportations highlights a concerning pattern of illegal re-entry into the country.

Amaya’s criminal history includes a conviction for robbery and two previous charges of illegal re-entry after deportation. The 2009 robbery conviction resulted in a 90-day custodial sentence. Subsequently, in 2012, he faced a 30-day custody sentence for illegal entry. In 2017, he was convicted under 8 U.S.C. 1326(a) for illegal re-entry after deportation, leading to a 10-month detention period.

Amaya’s repeated deportations and subsequent returns to the United States raise important questions about the effectiveness of immigration enforcement and cases like this highlight the potential risks associated with a lack of stringent measures. Those measures are being ignored by the Biden Administration and need to be enforced to keep citizens safe. There are simple ways to do that such as enhanced border security, stricter enforcement of immigration laws, and more effective collaboration between federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies.

When Jacksonville residents understand that illegal immigration affects them here and not just “over there” at a border far, far away – then maybe they will rise up and say “No more!”

What’s happening over there and being allowed to happen up there in DC – has eternal consequences for all of us. Eternal meaning – our lives can be ended on the streets by another illegal immigrant if we don’t get involved and demand justice, safety and security for all.

That’s our opinion – what say you?

Billie Tucker Volpe

Billie Tucker Volpe Founder of Eye on Jacksonville and Leadership Consultant to CEOs/Executives.

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