CHARLOTTE, N.C. (FOX 46) - 18-year-old Gustavo Zamudio left Mexico when he was very young and now he may face deportation to a country he doesn't remember.
"I don't want him to be deported because he doesn't remember Mexico. It's not his fault for me bringing him here. He's afraid, afraid of leaving because he doesn't know anyone there," Zamudio’s mother Maria Aguilar said.
Zamudio's mother Maria Aguilar tells me her son was arrested on February 25, after allegations that he embezzled $2,900 from his then employer Harris Teeter in a two month period
"Unfortunately Gus has been accused of something that hasn't been substantiated yet but what we do know is that Gus has been discriminated against at work and according to the family there is evidence of that," The Director of the Action NC Hector Vaca said,
Many friends and family telling FOX 46, Gus has a good head on his shoulder and even wanted to attend law school when he graduated. For him to steal, just didn’t sound like something he would do.
"No, this is not the type of Gus I know but kids make mistakes and I don't know if he's guilty or innocent but in our country, you are innocent until proven guilty. I don't think a detention center with hard criminals is where Gus belongs," Katie Robbins said.
The February arrest put him in the 287g program where I.C.E Agents took him to a detention center in Georgia.
On Friday, a judge denied his bond putting him in the detention center for the foreseeable future.
Friends now rallying together, to try and raise funds for Zamudio's defense, to bring him back to Charlotte.
"I’m hoping that Harris teeter will reconsider these charges, consider dropping them or allow us to help pay for this so that Gus can come home. If he's in fact guilty, certainly there is consequences but how do we right-side those for the crime that might have been committed. If he's innocent, it's tragic that he is where he is and he needs to come home," Robbins said.
"What we are hoping for Gus is to be able to keep him here longer to be able to fight this in order to be able to prove him innocent. Unfortunately, when it comes to the immigration process, even if you come out innocent, once you enter immigration procedures, I.C.E doesn't like to let go of you," Vaca said.