Chuck Grassley

United States Senator from Iowa

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Grassley Seeks Immigration History on Suspect in Des Moines Triple Homicide

Jul 18, 2019
WASHINGTON – Senator Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) is seeking details on the immigration history of Marvin Oswaldo Esquivel Lopez, who allegedly murdered Rossibeth Flores Rodriguez and her two children in Des Moines, Iowa on Tuesday. Esquivel Lopez was previously deported from the United States in 2010 and 2011, according to Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
 
“The ugly act of violence that claimed the lives of a mother and her two children in Des Moines this week is shocking and heartbreaking. What’s worse, it appears that laws in place to protect against such violence failed this young family,” Grassley said.  “It is crucial we understand how someone who had been twice deported from this country was able to re-enter for at least a third time and commit such an act of senseless violence. This case demonstrates yet again the need for Congress to take action to more effectively secure our border and keep dangerous criminals from so easily entering the United States.”
 
In the letter to acting Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan, Grassley requested all information the agency has on Esquivel Lopez.
 
Grassley’s letter to McAleenan follows:
 
July 18, 2019
 
The Honorable Kevin McAleenan
Acting Secretary
U.S. Department of Homeland Security
Washington, DC 20528
 
Dear Acting Secretary McAleenan:
 
I write to you today regarding the tragic murder of Des Moines, Iowa resident Rossibeth Flores Rodriguez and her two children by Marvin Oswaldo Esquivel Lopez, an illegal alien who had twice been removed from the United States. According to reports, Esquivel Lopez deliberately shot Ms. Rodriguez, her 11-year-old daughter, and her 5-year-old son after entering their home on the evening of July 16.[1]
           
Since then, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has confirmed that Esquivel Lopez was previously deported from the United States in 2010 and 2011 and has a prior federal conviction for illegally reentering the United States.[2] Esquivel Lopez is currently being held in the Polk County Jail on a $3 million bond and ICE has filed an immigration detainer and administrative arrest warrant with the Polk County Jail.[3]
 
It is crucial we understand how someone who had been twice deported from this country was able to re-enter for at least a third time and commit such an act of senseless violence. This case demonstrates yet again the need for Congress to take action to more effectively secure our border and keep dangerous criminals from so easily entering the United States. Therefore, please provide any information on the suspect, including the Homeland Security Investigations Executive Summary on Esquivel Lopez, to my staff as soon as possible, but no later than July 22, 2019.
 
Thank you for your attention to this matter. Please contact Drew Robinson or DeLisa Ragsdale of my staff at (202) 224-4515 if you have any questions.
 
Sincerely,
 
Charles E. Grassley
Chairman
U.S. Senate Committee on Finance
 
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[1] Sarah Beckman, Court records: Man “deliberately” shot and killed Des Moines mother and children, Local 5 – WeAreIowa.com (July 18, 2019), available at https://www.weareiowa.com/news/local-news/court-records-man-deliberately-shot-and-killed-des-moines-mother-and-children/
[2] Tyler J. Davis, Man accused in Des Moines triple homicide returned to US twice after deportation, ICE says, USA Today (July 18, 2019), available at https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2019/07/18/des-moines-crime-iowa-triple-shooting-ice-deportation-homicide-murder-polk-county-crime/1766480001/
[3] Sarah Beckman, ICE: Man arrested in Des Moines killings was deported twice from the U.S., Local 5 – WeAreIowa.com (July 18, 2019), available at https://www.weareiowa.com/news/local-news/ice-man-arrested-in-des-moines-killings-was-deported-twice-from-the-u-s/
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