A sweep of Bay Area towns by federal immigration officers resulted in a Napa man being detained Sunday morning outside his home, an immigrants’ advocacy group announced.

The man was taken into custody by agents of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement at about 9:30 a.m., according to Karla Marquez, a coordinator of the North Bay Rapid Response Network. After the incident, Napa County Supervisor Belia Ramos posted Rapid Response’s phone number to Facebook amid news and social media reports about ICE activity in at least three Bay Area cities.

Family members of the detained man told Rapid Response that federal agents arrived in at least six unmarked patrol vehicles while he was in the backyard of his home, and asked for his name, Marquez said Sunday night. In the course of taking him into custody, the ICE agents confirmed his name through identification in his wallet, she added.

Marquez said the man’s family declined to publicly release his name or address as of 7:30 p.m. Sunday.

“What was unusual for us was that the action happened on a Sunday morning, at a time when families are usually gathering or getting ready to go out,” she said. “The timing is very disturbing, along with the fact it was on day when most people were at home.”

North Bay Rapid Response is a 24-hour hotline created in Sonoma County last year in response to growing fear among undocumented immigrants and their families. Among its services is “legal observation,” the sending of an observer to capture an ICE encounter on video to confirm the incident and potentially aid the detainee’s legal defense later.

Sergeants for Napa Police and the Napa County Sheriff’s Office said neither of their agencies took part in the detention.

Police Sgt. Alfonso Ortiz said standard ICE practice is for those it detains locally not to be booked into the Napa County jail, but to be taken to the San Francisco jail instead.

After the ICE operation in Napa, Ramos went to social media to share the number of Rapid Response (707-800-4544), along with instructions on what to do if federal agents arrived at their own homes.

KNTV-TV, citing witnesses and immigration rights officials, reported other detentions in Pinole and El Sobrante as well as Napa.

The news unfolded after Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf announced Saturday the possibility of a weekend ICE operation in various parts of the Bay Area. Schaaf said she got the information from multiple credible sources and shared it not to panic anyone, but to allow residents to prepare.

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Bay City News Service contributed to this report.


City of Napa/Town of Yountville Reporter

Howard Yune covers the city of Napa and the town of Yountville. He has been a reporter and photographer for the Register since 2011, and previously wrote for the Marysville Appeal-Democrat, Anaheim Bulletin and Coos Bay (Oregon) World.