Credit: 123RF
Church’s Story About ICE Agent Posing as Homeless Goes Viral — Gets Exposed as Fake News

Church’s Story About ICE Agent Posing as Homeless Goes Viral — Gets Exposed as Fake News

Immigration and Customs Enforcement is denying the accuracy of a viral social media post saying one of its agents dressed as a homeless person in order to infiltrate a church to spy on a family.

“A statement posted to social media, Nov. 23, is a prime example of the reckless, irresponsible misinformation that continues to mislead the public concerning the mission of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE),” the agency said in a statement Monday.

The statement was in response to a tweet user @ei_mccomb posted Saturday. Eileen McComb — someone apparently affiliated with the Redmond United Methodist Church, which is located in Redmond, Washington — said an ICE agent posed as a homeless woman in order to search for a family. The post had received over 20,000 retweets and nearly 65,000 “likes” at the time of publication of this article.

McComb Tweet. Screen grab

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The Redmond United Methodist Church’s Facebook page shared a statement Sunday that went into further detail about the alleged incident.

The statement said a female ICE agent entered the church’s premises on Nov. 22, posing as a homeless person, and asked for housing accommodations. The statement, which offered no concrete proof the individual was affiliated with ICE, said the woman asked a social worker a number of questions about the facility. It also said the family in question, sensing something was wrong, secretly fled the scene to avoid the undercover agent.

The agency, however, says the story is fake news.

“The allegations that ICE entered the Redmond United Methodist church this weekend, or dressed as a homeless woman to enter a homeless shelter located within the church, are false and do nothing but promote fearmongering,” the ICE statement continued. “ICE did not enter the Redmond United Methodist Church, nor was the agency conducting operations near that location at any time this weekend.”

The Redmond United Methodist Church changes its story

A Facebook user updated the statement on the Redmond United Methodist Church Facebook page and said they believe the agent was actually affiliated with U.S. Border Patrol. A Border Patrol spokesperson said that, not only was their agency not involved in the incident, none of their agents were even working in the town at the time.

“The U.S. Border Patrol, Blaine Sector has been made aware of a social media post alleging a Border Patrol Agent conducted enforcement actions at the Redmond United Methodist Church in Redmond, Washington on November 22, 2019. There were no Border Patrol personnel involved in any enforcement actions at the Redmond United Methodist Church or in the city of Redmond, Washington and this information was provided to the Redmond Police Department,” the agency said in a statement to the Daily Caller News Foundation.

“If the public has any additional information regarding this matter, they are encouraged to contact the Redmond Police Department or the United States Border Patrol, Blaine Sector,” the statement continued.

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Cover image: An illustrative image of a homeless man. (123RF)

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