Milford, Massachusetts suffering from illegal immigration

Fatal Milford Crash Remains A Lightning Rod For Immigration Policy
By Asma Khalid May 7, 2014

MILFORD, Mass. — Everyone has a slightly different version of what happened on that late-summer evening in Milford in 2011, but the gruesome details are consistent.

Police say Nicolas Guaman, an undocumented immigrant from Ecuador, was driving drunk with his son in the car when, near the corner of Fayette and Congress, he hit and killed 23-year-old Matthew Denice, a recent college graduate who was riding his motorcycle home.

It was the kind of summer evening when folks were out barbecuing on the lawn, and there were plenty of witnesses.

It’s unclear how many times Denice was struck, but it’s clear Guaman never bothered to stop and check. He drove off from the scene.

— snip

The accident’s aftershocks still reverberate in Milford, a small MetroWest town with a population just under 28,000. It’s also overwhelmingly white, according to the latest census data. Slowly though, Latinos have been chipping away at that majority.

“Anybody in this town is getting undercut by illegal aliens so bad it’s hard to make a living anymore,” Jack Strapponi said at a tattoo parlor on the main strip in town, getting a blue flower fixed on his arm.

Most of the other businesses on the street are Latino restaurants, storefront churches or hair salons.

Strapponi says illegal immigrants are changing the flavor of the city. They wear their soccer cleats in the park and mess up the lawn.

“I’m 53 years old and I lived in this town pretty much my whole entire life,” Strapponi explained. “I’m Italian and my great grandparents were immigrants, but they came over here legally. They learned how to speak English.”

Strapponi says the town started to change as soon as all the Ecuadorians moved in — though it’s not clear when that shift began and how many Ecuadorians call Milford home these days.

“I know that sounds racist, but it’s not,” Strapponi said. “It’s like they just took up all the jobs.”

He says the accident that killed Matthew Denice struck a raw nerve.

“There’s been such an influx of illegal aliens in this town, you know, people are finally just fed up,” he said.

— snip

A Preventable Tragedy

But, for Maureen Maloney, Matthew Denice’s mother, her son’s death is a consequence of lax immigration enforcement.

Guaman was an undocumented immigrant who had previously been arrested for breaking and entering. And if he had been deported when he was arrested the first time back in 2008, her son might still be alive.

“Nothing is going to bring Matthew back. We are just hoping to get Gauman the longest sentence we can get for him and then after he serves his jail time here that he be deported,” she said.

But for Maloney, justice means more than punishment for Guaman.

“I think if we just get back to the basics and enforce the laws that we currently have here and secure our borders, that would do a lot to solve the problem,” she said.

Maloney has become an outspoken critic of illegal immigration and strongly opposes a bill in the State House that would give undocumented immigrants the right to apply for a driver’s licenses.

“I don’t want anyone else to ever have to go through this. I just want to raise public awareness, that’s the most important thing for me right now, is preventing another tragedy like this from happening,” Maloney said.

Jessica Vaughan, with the Center for Immigration Studies, says Denice’s death was a “preventable tragedy.”

“There has been a tendency sometimes for groups that are opposed to immigration enforcement to whitewash what can happen when people who are here illegally and causing problems in the community are allowed to slip between the cracks,” Vaughan said.

The accident has become fodder for policy debates around illegal immigration, which worries Frank Soults, the spokesman for the Massachusetts Immigrant and Refugee Advocacy Coalition.

“I think it’s very unfortunate that this trial is happening at the time that it’s happening because I think it can inflame some irrational sentiment,” Soults said.

His group has been pushing for a bill that would allow undocumented immigrants to obtain driver’s licenses, and the bill needs to get out of committee by May 15.

“We can’t look at what ifs, we have to deal with the reality, and the reality is these immigrants are here and we have to be trying to deal with the problem of how to make life safer for everybody, and that’s what driver’s licenses would unquestionably do,” Soults said.

Matthew Denice’s mother disagrees. Her son’s trial, which is expected to last five days, has become a rallying cry for a bigger crusade against driver’s licenses for the undocumented.


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7 Responses to Milford, Massachusetts suffering from illegal immigration

  1. mindweapon says:

    crescentfang • 15 hours ago
    It would be foolish to assume that people who are breaking the immigration laws are going to obey the traffic laws. Knowing our state, they would probably hire Hispanics to give the tests and print the written tests in Spanish.
    4 • Reply•Share ›
    katznkatz • 21 hours ago
    Well immigration IS a HUGE issue. Fighting about it among citizens that are here LEGALLY is not going to improve anything. You are here legally great!! We need your tax dollars. Your here illegally out you go……. We need to send THE message to our reps. Starting on the local level…..
    3 • Reply•Share ›
    ErikKengaard • a day ago
    The 1%, in their cold blooded calculations, consider these events collateral damage in their quest for cheap labor. Even now, they are working to attach an amnesty to a must pass military spending bill. And where are the people? Asleep.
    3 • Reply•Share ›
    pjinaries • a day ago
    Milford does have it’s driving problems. Years ago, the Milford police chief was found to be driving for FIVE Years without a license.
    2 • Reply•Share ›
    J__o__h__n • a day ago
    He wasn’t driving without a license; he was an undocumented driver. Drunk is kind of judgmental; how about non-sober driver.
    2 • Reply•Share ›
    This comment was deleted.
    JS middlechamber • a day ago
    Maybe if people stopped hiring them they wouldn’t come so much. How about transferring some of that anger to the contractors, construction, and landscape firms hiring them? But then suburban Americans would have to pay more for such services, can’t have that, can we?
    8 • Reply•Share ›
    ErikKengaard JS • a day ago
    We are up against the 1% who are spending over one billion on congress to get a cheap labor amnesty passed. Ask your representative, and be prepared for a lot of smoke in your face.
    1 • Reply•Share ›
    Sara Oaklander • a day ago
    I don’t understand why WBUR is buying into the conflation of this tragic incident and the issue of immigration. My guess is that more tragic accidents are caused by non-immigrant drunk drivers…probably even white drunk drivers. The fact that this individual’s behavior was so egregious that he caused Matthew Denice’s tragic death is not a function of the fact that he was undocumented; it’s that he was driving drunk. This tragedy has become a lightening rod and WBUR should not be perpetuating this anti-immigrant fervor in this way, but rather should be redirecting the conversation to where it belongs, which is on the issue of drunk driving.
    11 • Reply•Share ›
    Thinkfreeer Sara Oaklander • a day ago
    No, it is also an immigration issue. The point is that if someone doesn’t care about our immigration laws they are not likely to care about our other laws. They only care about themselves and not our society.
    3 • Reply•Share ›
    wigglwagon Sara Oaklander • a day ago
    Sara, no matter how people try to spin it, Matthew Denice would not have been killed if the immigration laws were being enforced.

    Illegal immigration will continue to be a major problem until Congress passes a bill mandating prison time for the employers of illegal workers.

    That would immediately eliminate largest part of the problem. Doing that 30 years ago would have saved the lives of the thousands of people who died in the desert while coming here for jobs. That would also put at least 8 million American workers back on jobs and paying taxes instead of needing to collect unemployment and welfare. That would go a long way toward eliminating the annual deficit.

    Now they are hauling the illegal workers north in 44 passenger tour buses instead of the 15 passenger vans they used before Mr. Deporter-in Chief took office.
    8 • Reply•Share ›
    B. R. Fly wigglwagon • a day ago
    “Illegal immigration will continue to be a major problem until Congress passes a bill mandating prison time for the employers of illegal workers.”

    You had me here.

    “Now they are hauling the illegal workers north in 44 passenger tour buses instead of the 15 passenger vans they used before Mr. Deporter-in Chief took office.”

    Lost me there.
    So much more could be done for this country if people could just get over their ODS. (Obama Derangement Syndrome)
    This problem preceded him and it will be there when he leaves office because no one wants to pay 40$ an hour per person for landscaping.
    2 • Reply•Share ›
    wigglwagon B. R. Fly • 6 hours ago
    You are an idiot. It is the time frame. The problem has gotten worse. Go back to school simpleton. No matter how much you like Obama, the problem has gotten worse since he took office.
    • Reply•Share ›
    pjinaries B. R. Fly • a day ago
    Wasn’t even Mitt Romney at one time hiring an illegal housekeeper?
    2 • Reply•Share ›
    middlechamber wigglwagon • a day ago
    There are laws on the books NO ONE ENFORCES THEM! I am a contractor and back in the 80’s laws were passed back then, it’s the DEMOCRATS that refuse to enforce them in this state as well as it being an only 1 party state, and we have Urkel for a governor
    6 • Reply•Share ›

    JS middlechamber • a day ago
    The laws on the books are inadequate. A factory in New Bedford was raided a few years ago. The undocumented workers got hauled away and locked up for days. The owners sent their lawyers to court, filed papers, and that was it. They probably got a small fine, paid by the company and not them personally. One was even quickly away on a Caribbean vacation while the workers still sat in jail.

    All legal, all according to the laws.
    4 • Reply•Share ›
    middlechamber Sara Oaklander • a day ago
    It is a lightning rod because this has happened more than just once or twice or three times or a dozen times. Most times when Illegals get stopped they NEVER get a TICKET because the officers know #1 they have no ID #2 they don’t give their real name, #3 they never go to court, and finding them is impossible they are like roaches scattering when you turn on the light!
    Many Illegals when stopped have multiple EBT cards under different names sucking the needed relief from REAL AMERICANS that DESERVE WELFARE
    6 • Reply•Share ›
    ErikKengaard middlechamber • a day ago
    Remember Jamiel Shaw. Your congressman considers these deaths collateral damage in the quest to bring in cheap labor.
    2 • Reply•Share ›
    Aron middlechamber • a day ago

  2. Stary Wylk says:

    There is nothing irrational about protecting ones own from what will hurt them. Survival is the basis of ethics.

  3. FN says:

    Let the MA paleskins whine on…they are going to accomplish NADA. It will just keep going on and they will VOTE for those who are putting it to them. This is purely Darwinism, the END of paleskins and the RISE of the Aryan. And it wouldn’t have happened without the aid and assistance of YKW.

    • the outdoorsman says:

      I love it! Our children and grand-children will be supermen and superwomen! Stay White.

  4. Anubis says:

    Illegal alien drunk drivers kill more Americans in 2 weeks than rifles do in a year. Its time to mestizo control.

    • Wyandotte says:

      I’ve a penpal living in Ecuador. She tells me there’s scads of north American whites over there. I guess they don’t like Amerika much anymore. That’s what we do best: foul (or permit the befouling of) our nests in one fashion or another, then run away. Then accuse other races of doing the same thing by coming here. LOL! It’s all too much for me!

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