Last week Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis gave opportunistic looters fair warning, notably declaring: “We are a Second Amendment State. … You loot, we shoot.” On Wednesday, DeSantis commented on the arrest of three men and one woman who were charged with “burglary of an unoccupied structure during a state of emergency.”
Calling them “heartless” and noting that “three of the four [were] illegal aliens,” the governor told an energetic crowd that if he had his way, he would “drag them out by the collars” and “send them back to where they came from.”
“They need to be brought to justice,” the governor said while providing an update on Hurricane Ian recovery efforts.
Several times, DeSantis highlighted that three of the four arrested were illegal immigrants. DeSantis has made headlines by joining Arizona and Texas governors in pushing back against the Biden administration’s open border policies — sending planes and buses of immigrants to northern Democrat-run sanctuary cities.
DeSantis told a crowd at the press conference: “And so these are people that are foreigners, they’re illegally in our country — and not only that, they tried to loot and ransack in the aftermath of a natural disaster.”
The fired-up governor continued: “I mean, they should be prosecuted, but they need to be sent back to their home country. They should not be here at all.”
DeSantis was referring to the four people arrested in Lee County, an area significantly impacted by last week’s Category 4 storm.
The New York Post identified the four as Omar Mejia Ortiz, 33; Valerie Celeste Salcedo Mena, 26; Brandon Mauricio Araya, 20; and Steve Eduardo Sanchez Araya, also 20.
Thus far, the tough-talking DeSantis has effectively minimized looting, particularly when compared with the aftermath of last September’s Hurricane Ida where looters in New Orleans overwhelmed police and 174 were arrested.
DeSantis took the opportunity to again put would-be looters on notice — warning of potentially deadly consequences by noting that “Floridians’ right to defend themselves and their homes will be honored.”
DeSantis also highlighted problems associated with Biden’s open border policy by noting that he attended a memorial service for Pinellas County Sheriff’s Deputy Mike Hartwick on Monday.
Hartwick, DeSantis pointed out, was “killed by a twice-deported illegal alien from Central America.”
“I do think that … happen[s when there are] massive numbers of people coming across the border,” DeSantis said.
“We can say without a shadow of a doubt that if [America] just had control of [its] border, that wouldn’t have happened. And that’s why they’re very preventable crimes,” DeSantis said to further applause.
Scroll down to leave a comment and share your thoughts.