News & Politics

Worker at Arizona Child Immigration Facility Molested Teen the Day Before Melania Trump Visited: Police

A recent report from ProPublica found that police have responded to at least 125 calls reporting sex offenses at immigration shelters.

Fernando Magaz Negrete mugshot

Police said on Wednesday that a worker at a child detention facility in Arizona that houses migrant children separated from their families has been booked on suspicion of molesting a 14-year-old under the facility's care.

The Associated Press reports:

Fernando Magaz Negrete kissed and fondled the girl in her bedroom at the facility on June 27 in an encounter witnessed by the girl's 16-year-old roommate, police said. They said surveillance video shows Magaz Negrete, 32, approaching the bedroom several times throughout the night, though the bedroom itself was outside the camera's view.

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Southwest Key, the organization that operates the facility, wouldn't say whether the child was among those separated from their parents under President Donald Trump's widely condemned family separation policy.

"When a child tells us of inappropriate behavior, we immediately call law enforcement and start an internal investigation as appropriate," Southwest Key spokesman Jeff Eller said in a statement. "That's what happened in this case. Southwest Key always works with law enforcement to bring the full force of the law to bear when it is warranted."

The facility was visited by First Lady Melania Trump on June 28th, just one day after the alleged crime.

A recent report from ProPublica found that police have responded to at least 125 calls reporting sex offenses at immigration shelters.

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Chris Sosa is the Senior Editor at AlterNet. His work also appears in Mic, Salon, Care2, Huffington Post and other publications. Follow him on Twitter @ChrisSosa.