Friends, We are heartsick that Jose’s bond was denied this morning. He will remain in detention while his U-Visa is adjudicated. Although there is no assurance of how quickly that will move forward, Jose’s lawyer estimates they will receive a response in the coming three months.

Hopes were high that Jose might return to family, work, and community. So much support was shown this day and that brings hope and courage to Jose and family as they continue this journey. Another way to offer care would be to send Jose a note in the mail. Address cards to him exactly as noted below:

Jose Alberto Robles-Martínez – 6160
Northwest Detention Center
1623 E J Street, Suite 2
Tacoma, WA, 98421-1615

When you write, you must include your name and address on the envelope. We are told that to “enhance the safety of the facility, all incoming mail is subject to screening for contraband. The mail is not read upon opening, only inspected by the delivering officer.”

Legal costs associated with today’s hearing total $2000. If you are able to help with those expenses, please click here and give as you are able. Our community has given $800 of that so far. Thanks to all who give and share!

We remain hopeful for a positive outcome from the U-Visa.

Kari, Joanne, and Michael



We have learned that Jose’s hearing may be as early as 8:30 AM TOMORROW. Anyone planning to be either in the courtroom (arranged ahead of time) or vigil outside may want to arrive before that early hour.


Community friends are invited to informally gather outside the NWDC from 10:30am until we hear news on the bond hearing outcome. There will not be a formally organized vigil outside, so we invite you to be present & patient waiting for news. Please feel free to bring signs with positive messages such as “Let Jose Go Free” “Grant Jose a Bond” “Friends of Jose Robles” etc. and to offer to lead others in song.


For those who are unable to be present in Tacoma, we encourage you to hold Jose and his family in the light as they await the news of hopeful reunification while Jose continues to wait for news on his U-Visa.


Questions? Email Michael Ramos at mramos@thechurchcouncil.org or Pastor Kari Lipke of Gethsemane Lutheran Church at klipke3@gmail.com.


We invite you to ACT NOW in solidarity with Jose.

We invite to write a letter of support speaking to Jose’s character, how you know him, and your hopes that he be allowed bond so that his family can be together again and Jose can return to work. Further details below.


While we await the outcome of Tuesday’s Hearing, please prayerfully consider if you and your community can offer financial support if Jose is granted bond, as bonds can be several thousands of dollars. It truly does take a community to ensure that families are able to remain together.


Thank you for your ongoing love, solidarity and support of Jose. Despite his prolonged incarceration, Jose has maintained strength and hope; his courage is renewed because of your letters, calls, visits, prayers, and financial support. Let us continue the journey alongside our brother.



Que viva Jose!


Michael, Joanne, and Kari




New letters are welcome, but letters updated from August are fine (the Judge has not seen the previous letters). If updating, please add a new date and include some reference to the time Jose has been in custody (6+ months — arrested July 17, 2019).


Address letters to:

The Honorable John C. Odell Tacoma Immigration Court

1623 East J Street

Tacoma, WA 98421


Include this line of reference: Re: JOSE ROBLES MARTINEZ (A 200 686 160)


If you are connected with a faith community that has letterhead, feel free to see if using letterhead is possible. If you write as an individual, proof of a person’s legal status should be attached (a copy of a passport or green card).


Signed original letters are needed at Gethsemane by 11am on Monday morning, February 10. While the office is not staffed on Monday morning, the immigration office in the church will be open and their staff has agreed to receive your letters from 8:30am-11am. Please use the front door buzzer to reach them. 003#.


It will be helpful for Pr Kari Lipke to know if you will be bringing a letter to the GLC office (911 Stewart Street, 98101) so that she can be sure she has received all the letters she will be taking to Jose’s lawyers.

A reminder of Jose’s case details (not to be included in letters, but to help with writing them):Jose Robles, a longtime Lakewood resident, went to a meeting with Immigration and Customs Enforcement on July 17, 2019, along with his attorney to file a stay of removal, in the hope that Robles could go home after thirteen months in Sanctuary. Despite having a pending form of relief and a judicial stay, agents arrested Robles that day and transferred him to NWDC. Mr. Robles has garnered broad community support after the City of Lakewood denied signing his U-visa Certification without giving any reasons for the denial. Mr. Robles, the victim of a violent crime, met all requirements for the U-Certification, because he had reported the crime and cooperated with law enforcement in the investigation. Eventually, while in Sanctuary, community support helped urge the Pierce County Prosecutor’s Office to signed the U-certification.




Depending on the outcome of the hearing, there may be other public actions in the days following the hearing. We will keep you up to date as quickly as we are able. An updated GoFundMe campaign may be launched to assist with legal fees, including bond. The following links can be used in the meantime. Or, as always, checks to the church (memo: sanctuary) are welcome.




You can give family support funds here. 

You can make a gift of legal support funds here.


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