Latina Youth Once Threatened With Deportation Speaks Up

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The story of 21-year-old undocumented student Jessica Colotl made headlines when she faced deportation after being arrested in 2010 for driving without a license. It was a debate: Was Colotl a law breaker who should be penalized, or a bright young woman, brought to the United States at 11, facing a too severe punishment?

“Just because someone is driving without a license or ends up in jail for a minor traffic violation … [they] should not have to be deported,” said Colotl, who is now 28. “I think that’s a cruel and usual punishment that’s actually against the Constitution.”

Now a paralegal with her sights set on law school, Colotl and immigration attorney Dustin Baxter — a partner at Kuck Immigration Partners in Atlanta — share their thoughts on the current state of Latino immigration, deportation and the heightened criminalization of the undocumented.

Check out the visual storytelling about Jessica Colotl’s experience with law enforcement. Read the English version here and the Spanish version here.

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