Curry inmate released despite immigration hold

Sharna Johnson

Law enforcement is searching for an inmate who was released Thursday night from the Curry County jail despite an immigration hold.

Detention Center Administrator Keith Norwood said Ramiro Chavez was released on his own recognizance by order of magistrate court.

However, Norwood said there is a federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement hold in his file indicating he was supposed to be detained for federal authorities.

Around 3:30 p.m. Friday, an alert was issued to locate and return Chavez to the jail.

“Looking at the documentation, the fellow should have been held until INS got here,” Norwood said Friday afternoon.

“As far as I’m concerned, we need to bring him back.”

Norwood said he is conducting an investigation into the release and said he doesn’t want to call it a mistaken release until he has a better understanding of what happened.

Chavez was booked into the jail Aug. 14 and a bond order was issued through magistrate court on Tuesday, Norwood said.

“If he is seen or anyone knows his whereabouts, we urge them to contact the sheriff’s office,” Undersheriff Wesley Waller said.

Chavez, 23, is described as 5-feet-10-inches tall and 180 pounds with brown hair and brown eyes.

Court records show he was in jail on a charge of misdemeanor DUI, first offense, and felony contributing to the delinquency of a minor.

Curry County Sheriff’s Office: 769-2335