Illegal immigrant accused in several crimes, standoff, released from jail for second time

Luis Pineda-Ancheta was deported in 2006 and returned illegally. He was arrested and released, later causing a lengthy and dangerous standoff after committing more crimes. He was taken into custody after nine hours, and is back out on bond.

The Mecklenburg County Sheriff's Office would not hold a suspect in the country illegally under an ICE detainer, allowing a man to get out of jail after being arrested twice. 

The suspect, Luis Pineda-Ancheta was deported from the country in 2006 and returned illegally. He was initially arrested on May 15 on multiple charges of misdemeanor domestic violence and felony larceny. He fulfilled his court ordered terms and conditions for release, paid his $5,000 bond, and was let go on May 17. 

Just a week later, Pineda-Ancheta was accused of more domestic violence crimes and officers went to serve him with warrants for his arrest on May 23. When police arrived, Pineda-Ancheta barricaded himself inside of a south Charlotte apartment and refused to come out, leading to a "lengthy and dangerous stand-off," the sheriff's office said. 

After nine hours, Pineda-Ancheta was taken into custody. He again posted bond, and was released from jail on June 1 with an electronic monitoring device. 

Mecklenbug County Sheriff Gary McFadden says his decision to no longer detain illegal immigrants under ICE's voluntary 287(g) program was not the sole reason for Pineda-Ancheta's releases, and says he was not aware of the suspect's citizenship status when he was first arrested. 

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"Different discretionary decisions of multiple stakeholders in the criminal justice system, including judicial and law enforcement (in particular ICE’s own discretion), must also be acknowledged and addressed by those who believe that Pineda-Ancheta should have been kept in custody and then placed directly into deportation proceedings," McFadden said in a statement. 

McFadden says rather than ICE issuing an order for arrest based on Pineda-Ancheta's illegal re-entry into the country, they issued a voluntary detainer, "knowing that it is against my policy to honor such detainers." 

The sheriff says his office would have honored a warrant for arrest, and he doesn't understand why that request was not made by ICE. 

"MCSO will always honor a criminal warrant and hold any individual so charged in custody if and until that person has satisfied all court-ordered conditions of release."

The sheriff's office is required by law to release anyone who has satisfied their conditions for release and makes bond. McFadden also noted that the sheriff's office has no control over what the terms for release are, or what bond is set at-- that is left up to county judges and magistrates. 

At this time, the Mecklenburg County Sheriff's Office does not have any information regarding current federal charges against Pineda-Ancheta or his current whereabouts.