Los Angeles

Supporters Rally for Release of Father Detained by ICE in Front of Daughters

Family, friends and supporters who were trying to stop the deportation of a father who was taken by ICE agents while driving his daughters to school rallied in downtown Los Angeles Monday.

Supporters of the father of four were hoping that keeping their voices loud, and putting continuous pressure on Immigration and Customs Enforcement would keep the man from being deported.

They gathered in Pershing Square chanting, "Shut down ICE! Shut down ICE!"

Romulo Avelica Gonzalez was apprehended by ICE agents last Tuesday. He has lived in the U.S. for more than 25 years.

ICE agents detained him as he was dropping off his 12- and 13-year-old daughters at school in Highland Park. One of his daughters captured video of the moment he was taken into custody

"That's why we are here - to be strong for him and as a community we can do big things," his daughter Jocelyn said. "We're not leaving. We're bigger than Trump. We're bigger than ICE - all of us together."

In a statement ICE said Gonzalez was arrested because of multiple criminal convictions. NBC4 learned that those convictions include one DUI, other vehicle code violations, and an outstanding removal order.

"Whether it's the state of California or whether it's the United States, they should always consider the best interests of children when they take action," said immigration attorney Alan Diamante.

The protesters demanded ICE agents stay his deportation order or at least release him on bond so he can fight it.

"God is on the side of justice. God stands with those who have been oppressed and marginalized. God stands with Romulo and his family," supporter Francisco Garcia said.

Family members were waiting to see when Gonzalez's deportation hearing would be. That has yet to be determined.

He was still being detained by ICE at its facility in Adelanto.

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