Crime NC mom facing deportation after being accused of stealing

NC Susan


NC mom facing deportation after being accused of stealing salad, fruit
1 hour ago

A former employee of a Wilmington restaurant was accused by her employer of stealing a California salad and five fruit bowls valued at $28.44.

The felony charge against the woman was later dismissed, but her arrest brought her undocumented status to light, and she now awaits a hearing to determine if she will be deported to Mexico.

"For me and my family it has been really hard, because I don't think a family member should be arrested for a salad," stated Milca Cruz, Irma Cruz's 12-year-old daughter who spoke on her behalf as Irma does not speak English.

Irma Carranza Cruz, 43, was arrested on Feb. 15 on a felony larceny by employee charge. Her undocumented status was discovered during booking at the New Hanover County Detention Center, which led to the notification of Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE).

"My mom said she was sick the day of her shift, but she didn't want to call out of work for fear that she would get fired," Milca Cruz said. "She suffers from diabetes, and all she had that day was coffee, so she ate a salad and two fruit bowls that were going to be thrown away."

Cruz stated normally the food is marked if it is going to be saved, she says she and other dishwashers at the restaurant often would eat food that would be normally be thrown away.

Soon after her arrest, Cruz was transferred to ICE custody at an Atlanta detention center. But through the use of a GoFundMe page and other donations, Cruz was able to post her $20,000 bond on March 20 and return to her home in Wilmington and her 12-year-old daughter, a United States citizen, while she awaits immigration proceedings. ICE spokeswoman Tamara Spicer said her case is currently under review by the Executive Office for Immigration Review.

"She says she feels like this is an injustice, because she was going to be deported, and she was scared as I am really young and myself and my siblings couldn't care for ourselves if she was not here," Milca Cruz stated.

WECT reached out to Joseph Kloiber, owner of the Famous Toastery, who called law enforcement regarding the alleged theft.

"This story has been made out to be just about a salad and there is much more to it than that," Kloiber said in a phone interview.

Asked why he decided to drop the charges against Cruz, Kloiber said although this was not an isolated incident, he felt it best both parties split amicably in hopes it would be "forgotten about."

Kloiber declined requests for an on-camera interview, but added this incident has cast a negative light on not only his business but himself as well.

It's unfortunate no matter what I say it's not who I am or what I am about. This is about a simple rule that was broken. I'm being made out to be a heartless soul and that is not who I am.

It was alleged that we made a call to ICE for the recent termination of an employee. This is false. We were unaware that this employee was not documented. As a man with a family of my own, I was upset to discover that this employee was being separated from her family, which was never my intention. All charges have been dropped by us, the independent owners of the Famous Toastery.

Due to an unfortunate situation, we had to terminate a former employee due to multiple incidents in which she was recorded on video stealing from the restaurant.

We value our employees and like being a restaurant that people look forward to coming to work each day; however, we have a zero tolerance policy for theft. Regardless, we are unsettled at the degree to which the situation has reached.

Other than us making the decision to terminate this employee, everything else that has happened has been out of our control.

Although Cruz doesn't appear to have any other recent run-ins with law enforcement, Spicer said Cruz was arrested twice in 2004 by U.S. Border Patrol and issued voluntary returns to Mexico in both cases.

"In 2006, she illegally entered the United States," Spicer added.

"I didn't have the proper paper work," stated Cruz, when asked why she entered the country illegally multiple times. She told us this incident will force her to obtain her citizenship in a legal manner.



Has No Life - Lives on TB
If she was legal, I'd have sympathy. I always hated it when employers forced me to throw away food. But she's illegal. Don't let the door hit ya on the way out.

Illini Warrior

Illini Warrior
they honest to God believe that typing up a lying POS article - complete with a bogus title - gets them any sympathy?

ICE isn't even interested what she did right or wrong while she was in the country ILLEGALLY - she's illegal - period ....


Live Free & Die Free.... God Freedom Country....
they honest to God believe that typing up a lying POS article - complete with a bogus title - gets them any sympathy?

ICE isn't even interested what she did right or wrong while she was in the country ILLEGALLY - she's illegal - period ....

Send her home....



Has No Life - Lives on TB
I obtained permanent residence (not foreign citizenship) in a different country once. It was a huge PITA with lots of paperwork and waiting. Still, I did it legally. No reason others can't legally obtain residence here in the US.

Best regards