Mom 'flabbergasted' over daughter's deportation

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by REBECCA LOPEZ

Bio | Email | Follow: @rlopezwfaa

WFAA

Posted on January 4, 2012 at 11:00 PM

Updated Thursday, Jan 5 at 3:01 PM

NEWS 8 EXCLUSIVE

DALLAS — Johnisa Turner hasn't seen her 15-year-old daughter Jakadrien in more than a year. "It was definitely a hard time," she said. "This has been going on for so long... it's still hard."

Jakadrien ran away in November 2010 and ended up deported to Colombia by mistake.

"I'm flabbergasted," her mother said. And angry, too.

The case is getting national attention. News 8 has learned that the NAACP and other civil rights leaders will brief President Barack Obama and the Congressional Black Caucus on this case Thursday morning.

"Something definitely has to change," Johnisa Turner said.

Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the federal agency that deported Jakadrien, denies any wrongdoing. ICE said the teen gave police a false name when she was arrested in Houston for theft in April. Not even Jakadrien's defense attorney knew her real name.

ICE said it tried to verify her identity through fingerprints and database searches, and nothing raised a red flag.

But how did a 15-year-old girl fool police, federal officials and a judge?

Her mother is just as puzzled.

"She was a mature girl, but Jakadrien was a good girl," Johnisa Turner said. "She was responsible, respectful, started going through regular teenage things."

The family said immigration officials can say all they want, but ultimately, they deported a 15-year-old American citizen who didn't speak Spanish to a South American country where she knew no one.

And now Jakadrien may be pregnant.

"I miss her," the girl's mother said. "I love her and I want her home."

But no one knows for sure when that will be.

The Colombian government still won't release Jakadrien, although there are many government officials now trying to expedite her return.

E-mail rlopez@wfaa.com

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