Hartford, CT (WFSB) — A man who entered the country illegally 26 years ago was at the center of a rally in Hartford on Friday morning.
Protestors lined the streets at 450 Main St. in Hartford at 6 a.m., which is the Immigration Customs Enforcement building.
Hartford police estimated about 30 people were there. No arrests were made.
“We shall not be moved,” they chanted.
They were there to protest the deportation of Nelson Pinos, who came to the U.S. from Ecuador in 1992.
“I believe that Nelson and his family have a right to live here in this country,” said Ron Hurt of New Haven.
Protestors blocked doors with barrels filled with rocks and sat in a chain in front of the building. People who had to do business there were turned away.
“I’ve been to rallies and his children are standing there in tears saying ‘bring our father home. He is a hardworking man, he has talent. He’s a carpenter. He has a career,'” said Rev. Scott Marks of New Haven.
Pinos has three children in the country, including a 6-year-old son, and 13-year-old and 16-year-old daughters.
Pinos was ordered to leave the country a few weeks before Christmas last year.
He instead sought sanctuary at a church in New Haven.
Protestors, as they have done all year long, argue that Pinos has been a homeowner and working taxpayer who regularly checked in with ICE.
However, he was denied a stay of deportation.
After about three hours in cold temperatures, the protestors took their message down Main Street. Main Street was closed for a brief period of time as a result, police said.
The group grew to more than 70 on the steps of Hartford City Hall.
“We can here today to stand up for Nelson, keep Nelson home,” Marks said.
They quietly dispersed around 10:30 a.m.
ICE officials said he’s now considered an immigration fugitive.
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