Detainees Leaving ICE Detention from the
Karnes Correctional Center
Karnes City, Texas

Detainees Deported or Released
Number last 12 months 684
Out of total detained 1,304
 
Percent change:
from previous 12 months 37 %
from FY 2005 71 %
from FY 2000 -34 %
 
Facility ranking on detainees top 25 %

Table 1: Number leaving ICE detention
from this facility

During the most recent 12 month period for which data are available, a total of 684 detainees housed at the Karnes Correctional Center left that facility because they were deported, were released under supervision while their cases were being decided, or left ICE detention for one of a variety of other reasons. The use of this facility for the temporary housing of federal immigration detainees was arranged through an intergovernmental service agreement (IGSA) under which payments by ICE to another governmental agency are made for housing federal detainees. While the facility is government owned, it is operated by the The GEO Group, Inc. that was in the business of providing detention services for housing federal detainees.

Those individuals who departed from this facility because they were leaving ICE detention made up 52 percent of the 1,304 detainees housed at this facility during the last 12 months. This report focuses on the reasons these individuals left ICE detention. Sometimes this report speaks of these individuals as those "exiting" ICE detention, or simply as "exits." The other 48 percent remained in ICE detention but were transferred from the Karnes Correctional Center to other facilities.

This report covers those who left ICE custody. It excludes individuals transferred to other ICE facilities. For more information on this facility, including individuals that were transferred, see additional TRAC reports in this series.

This report series is based upon analyses conducted by the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse (TRAC) at Syracuse University of 3.4 million government records tracking each individual who passed through an ICE detention facility during the past decade. The most recent 12 month period for which comprehensive data are available is for April 2007 through March 2008. See About the Data.

How This Facility Ranks Nationally

Rankings on the number leaving ICE detention. The Karnes Correctional Center was one of 1,528 facilities that were used to house immigration detainees during the last decade, and one of 654 facilities nationwide that housed ICE detainees during the most recent 12 month period. Of these 654, there were 324 facilities that had at least 10 individuals who were deported or released. Excluding those facilities with fewer than 10 exits, the Karnes Correctional Center last year ranked in the top 25 percent nationwide in the number of individuals leaving ICE detention. This means that 25 percent of the locations contributed the same or a larger numbers of exits, while 75 percent had a smaller number. See Table 1.

Deportations. Nationally, the most common reason that a detainee left ICE detention was that they were deported from the United States. During the most recent 12 month period for which comprehensive data are available, nationwide 81 percent of those leaving ICE detention were deported or "voluntarily" departed. By way of comparison, about the same percentage of detainees (82 percent) left the country from the Karnes Correctional Center because they were formally deported, or left under the so-called "voluntary departure" procedure.

Trends in the Number of Detainees Deported or Released

Trends in the number leaving ICE detention. When deportations and other releases during the April 2007-March 2008 period were compared with those in the previous 12 months, the Karnes Correctional Center numbers were up by 37 percent. During the April 2006-March 2007 period the facility processed 499 "exits" as compared with 684 last year. As detailed in Table 1, numbers last year were also up 71 percent as compared with the number of those leaving ICE detention (401) during FY 2005. Exits last year were however down by 34 percent as compared with the number of exits (1,042) during FY 2000.

Bar chart of fymondt

Figure 1: Month-by-month number of detainees leaving this facility

Longer term exit trends. Greater detail on these long-term trends for those leaving ICE detention from the Karnes Correctional Center are displayed in Figure 1. Here the month-by-month number of exits are graphed against the backdrop of the total detainees leaving the custody of this facility. Exits are displayed with darker shading while those transferred appear with lighter shading. As is readily apparent, considerable variation has occurred over time in both the overall numbers of detainees as well as the volume leaving ICE detention during this period.

Fiscal Year ICE Detainees
Total Exits Percent
1999 1,176 690 59 %
2000 1,797 1,042 58 %
2001 1,212 664 55 %
2002 699 260 37 %
2003 1,575 555 35 %
2004 1,729 801 46 %
2005 773 401 52 %
2006 644 457 71 %
2007 1,113 537 48 %
2008 (est) 1,534 846 55 %

Table 2: Number of detainees leaving
this facility over the last decade

Exit trends are also summarized by fiscal year in Table 2. Year-by-year figures for the Karnes Correctional Center are given for the total number of detainees as compared with those leaving ICE detention from the facility. The percent of detainees that left ICE detention is also given. (As mentioned above, the remaining detainees were transferred to another ICE detention facility.) Because data for all twelve months of the most recent fiscal year are not yet available, the FY 2008 numbers (October 2007 through September 2008) are estimated based upon reporting for the first six months.

Were Detained Individuals from the Local Area?

Information on the place of arrest was not included in the available data ICE released. However, we can examine whether the Karnes Correctional Center was the first ICE facility in which these detainees were held. According to ICE records, for the majority (66 percent) of these detainees, the Karnes Correctional Center was the first place they were sent when they were detained by ICE. The remaining 34 percent had been transferred in from another ICE detention facility.

We can also look at how quickly they arrived at this facility after they were first detained. A total of 69 percent arrived at the Karnes Correctional Center at some point during the very first day they were detained by ICE. There was considerable variability among detainees in the number of detention facilities they had been held in before they were finally deported or released from this facility. The number of facilities ranged as high as 11 separate locations for some detainees. These figures again are based on an analysis of the most recent 12 months for which data are available.

For the United States as a whole, last year the typical detainee stayed in two different ICE detention facilities before being deported or released - half stayed in 2 or fewer facilities, and half stayed in 2 or more. The average number of ICE facilities detainees moved through was 1.9. Detainees at the Karnes Correctional Center on average had stayed at somewhat fewer (1.7) ICE facilities.

Reason Left ICE Facility Profile U.S Profile
Number Percent Percent
Deported/Removed 537 79 % 72 %
Bonded out 80 12 % 8 %
Voluntary departure 21 3 % 10 %
U.S. Marshal or Other Agency 17 2 % 3 %
Orders of Recognizance or Supervision 16 2 % 5 %
Proceedings Terminated 13 2 % 2 %
Died 0 . 0 %
Escaped 0 . 0 %
Paroled 0 . 0 %
Withdrawal 0 . 1 %
Total 684 100 % 100 %

Table 3: Reasons individuals left ICE detention during the last 12 months

Why Did Detainees Leave ICE Detention?

ICE records one of twenty-three reasons a detainee left ICE detention. As shown in Table 3, these reasons fall into ten general categories -- from leaving because one is deported or removed, to leaving because one escaped or the individual died while in custody.

Deportation. As mentioned earlier, the most common reason detainees left the Karnes Correctional Center was that they were deported. A total of 537 individuals (79 percent) were deported or removed from the Karnes Correctional Center during the most recent 12 month period for which data are available. (ICE data did not distinguish between deportations and removals, and the terms are used interchangeably in this report.)

Bonded out. A group of individuals (80 or 12 percent) were also "bonded out." This generally covers situations where the individual posts a bond and is released while awaiting a decision on their deportation (removal) case. The amount of the bond is set by ICE, or by an Immigration Judge. Many individuals are not eligible to be released because their continued detention is considered mandatory under provisions in the immigration laws.

Voluntary departure. Under some circumstances, detainees are allowed to take "voluntary departure." As with deportation, under voluntary departure a person must leave the country. However, unlike formal deportation where the individual is barred by law from reentering this country permanently or for a period of years, under voluntary departure the individual is not legally barred from reentry. An additional 21 detainees (3 percent) left the Karnes Correctional Center last year as voluntary departures.

Transferred to criminal custody. A total of 17 individuals (2 percent) left this facility last year because they were turned over to U.S. Marshals or to some other government agency. This typically occurs because there is an outstanding criminal case against the individual, or the individual is needed as a material witness in a criminal case.

Orders. Orders are additional mechanisms that are sometimes used to release a person while their case is pending, or awaiting removal. Under an "order of recognizance" an individual is released with reporting conditions while in deportation proceedings and awaiting a final decision. A second type of order ("order of supervision") releases an individual after a final order of removal. Here an individual is released because ICE has not met the time limits the law imposes for deporting the individual. There were 16 (2 percent) who left the Karnes Correctional Center detention for these reasons: 5 with orders of recognizance, and 11 with orders of supervision.

No legitimate grounds to deport. Sometimes individuals left ICE detention because they "won" their case. Typically this occurs when an Immigration Judge orders the deportation proceedings ICE has filed against them "terminated" (dismissed) and the judge's order after any appeals becomes final. Analysis of the latest 12 months of data show that a total of 13 individuals, or 2 percent were released from detention by the Karnes Correctional Center because a determination was made that there were no grounds to deport the individuals and thus ICE had to release them from custody.

Escape and death. Nationally, there were 92 individuals who escaped ICE detention during the latest 12 month period for which data are available, and 8 individuals were recorded as having died in detention. No one was recorded by the Karnes Correctional Center as either escaping or dying last year. Over the past decade, there was also no record of anyone who died or escaped from this facility.

As shown in Table 3, no one was recorded as leaving the Karnes Correctional Center during the past 12 months for the following reasons: Paroled and Withdrawal. See "Reasons for Leaving ICE Detention" for a description of these categories.

Pie chart of release_grp

Figure 2: Reasons individuals left ICE detention

Comparing Release Reasons Against The National Picture

In many respects release reasons for the Karnes Correctional Center departed from the national picture. It was the case that a higher proportion left because they were deported from this facility (79 percent) than was true for the U.S. as a whole (72 percent). A lower proportion (3 percent) left this facility as voluntary departures than was true nationally (10 percent).

In addition, differences were seen for individuals released on bond (12 versus 8 percent).

The facility's percentages fell within 3 percentage points of the national figures for all other categories.

Nationalities

Which nationalities predominate? Last year in the United States, individuals from Mexico comprised the largest number of those leaving ICE detention. Some 53.6 percent of all detainees recorded Mexico as their country of origin. The Karnes Correctional Center had a much larger proportion of detainees from Mexico - 74 percent among their exits. Detainees from Mexico were also the largest single nationality group among those leaving detention from the facility.

Nationalities Ranked in Top 10 Left ICE Detention
Total Deported/
Voluntary
Departure
Percent
- ALL 684 558 81.5 %
1 Mexico 508 429 84.4 %
2 Brazil 34 34 100.0 %
3 Peru 15 14 93.3 %
4 Ecuador 10 8 80.0 %
El Salvador 10 1 10.0 %
6 Venezuela 9 7 77.7 %
7 Jamaica 8 8 100.0 %
8 Honduras 7 1 14.2 %
9 Guatemala 6 2 33.3 %
10 United Kingdom 5 5 100.0 %

Table 4: Numbers leaving ICE detention by nationality
during the last 12 months

In descending order, the other top nationalities after Mexico that made up those leaving ICE detention from the Karnes Correctional Center last year were: Brazil (5%), Peru (2%), Ecuador (1%) and El Salvador (1%). This compared to the United States as a whole where the other top five nationalities after Mexico were Honduras (11.0%), Guatemala (10.0%), El Salvador (8.4%) and Dominican Republic (1.6%).

Pie chart of nat

Figure 3: Nationality of those
leaving ICE detention

For the frequency for each of the other nationalities within the top 10 among those leaving ICE detention from the Karnes Correctional Center last year see Table 4.

Deportations and voluntary departures by nationality. Within the nationalities that made up those listed in Table 4 with more than one individual, the proportion deported or voluntarily departing varied from 10 percent to 100 percent. As mentioned above, this compares with 82 percent for all detainees.

More than one country was tied with the highest rate of 100 percent, where detainees were deported or took voluntary departure. At the other end of the range were detainees from El Salvador, where 10 percent ended up deported or were allowed voluntary departure.

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