The Slatest

A Honduran Man Dies After Being Detained for Weeks, the Sixth Migrant to Die in ICE Custody in the Past Nine Months

A protestor holds a handmade "Don't Look Away" sign in Copley Square in Boston.
A protestor holds a handmade “Don’t Look Away” sign in Copley Square on Wednesday in Boston. Scott Eisen/Getty Images

A 30-year-old Honduran man died in ICE custody last week, the immigration agency confirmed, after being held for 3½ weeks at different facilities in Texas. Yimi Alexis Balderramos-Torres was found unresponsive in his dormitory on Sunday at the Houston Contract Detention Facility after having come to the country illegally a month earlier. He entered ICE custody after what the agency describes as a “routine traffic stop” by local law enforcement on June 6. By CNN’s count, Balderramos-Torres is the sixth person to die in ICE custody since October and the 11th person to die in U.S. government custody more broadly in the past 10 months.


Balderramos-Torres had tried to cross the border illegally on multiple occasions and most recently was sent back to Mexico on May 17, 10 days before he crossed again and was detained by ICE. The cause of death is unknown and ICE released a statement on the medical and health protocols for its detainees. “All ICE detainees receive medical, dental and mental health intake screening within 12 hours of arriving at each detention facility, a full health assessment within 14 days of entering ICE custody or arrival at a facility, and access to daily sick call and 24-hour emergency care,” the agency said.

“Other detainees to die in ICE custody since November include a 58-year-old Cuban man; two Russian nationals, a 40-year-old man and a 56-year-old man; a 54-year-old Mexican man; and a 21-year-old Indian national,” according to CNN. “A 25-year-old Salvadoran transgender woman, Jonathan Alberto ‘Johana’ Medina Leon, also died in the agency’s custody in early June.”