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Client Stabs Prominent Immigration Attorney to Death in his Queens Office

Plus: A settlement is secured in a court case accusing ICE of "blanket denials" of release for arrested immigrants

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Jim Li, also known as Li Jinjin, a prominent attorney from Great Neck, Long Island, was stabbed multiple times in his immigration law firm office in Flushing, Queens. The 66-year-old was found unconscious and unresponsive at the scene, then pronounced dead at the hospital after he was transported. Xiaoning Zhang, a 25-year-old from Flushing, was arrested and charged with murder and two counts of criminal possession of a weapon, according to the New York Police Department. The stabbing happened after a heated argument between Jim Li and Zhang, who was his client. The police reported the woman stabbed Li in the body and the neck when the conflict intensified. Newsday/JacksonHeightsPost

In other local immigration news…

Settlement Secured in Case Accusing ICE of “Blanket Denials” of Arrested Immigrants

📍Documented Original 
The New York City field office of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement will now be required to give immigrants fair consideration of release after the New York Civil Liberties Union and the Bronx Defenders reached a settlement with the agency in Velesaca v. Decker, a 2020 federal class-action lawsuit against the office.

An investigation had uncovered that ICE got rid of the “release” option in a computer algorithm it uses to provide recommendations on whether someone should be released on bond or remain in detention. As a result, the program automatically began recommending that all immigrants be detained, and the number of people the government granted release to fell from 47% in 2017 to a low of 3% in 2019. 

Now, ICE will now have to take multiple factors into account when determining over whether arrested immigrants are released, detained, put on a monitoring program, or placed on other conditions for approximately three years. New factors will also be introduced, including whether the individual arrested has a disability and what the individual’s financial ability to pay bond looks like. Read more on the case on Documented.

Man Charged with Attempted Murder after Hitting Woman 125 times for Being Asian

Tammel Esco, 42, of Yonkers has been charged with attempted murder and assault, both as hate crimes, after hitting a 67-year-old woman as she entered an apartment building pushing a shopping cart. In the leadup to the assault, which a security camera captured, Esco called the victim an anti-Asian, misogynistic slur and she ignored him. He then attacked her. It is yet another case in a nationwide surge in anti-Asian violence, but the incident is atypical for Yonkers, where about 7% of the city’s 200,000 residents are of Asian descent and which hasn’t seen increased reports of bias crimes targeting those of Asian descent. New York Times

THE CITY to Host Off-the-Record Community Conversation on New York City’s Rent Crisis

Nonprofit newsroom THE CITY will host its latest edition of Open Newsroom on Monday, March 21 at 6:30 p.m. on Zoom. The community conversation will focus on rent affordability and the Emergency Rental Assistance Program, and will also explore local resources available to tenants. The discussion features housing experts from Mobilization for Justice, Legal Aid Society, and Catholic Charities, and is moderated by THE CITY’s explanatory and service journalism reporter Rachel Holliday Smith.

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