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Family of student allegedly murdered by illegal immigrant wants justice for ‘preventable tragedy’

Thursday night on Fox News, Laura Ingraham interviewed the aunt of an American who was violently murdered by an illegal immigrant.

The suspected killer of Cristin Vargas' 20-year-old nephew, San Antonio college student Jared Vargas, is an illegal immigrant who had been previously arrested and had violated his probation. An immigration judge gave him a voluntary deportation order, but he was not removed from the country before becoming a suspect in Jared Vargas' death.

Ingraham asked Cristin Vargas how her family reacts to those who say highlighting violent crimes by illegal aliens is a scare tactic.

"It's completely disgusting and it's outrageous," Vargas said. She thanked Ingraham for the opportunity to share Jared's story.

"Hard worker is an understatement. He was always working full-time and going to school, sometimes working two jobs. And he had an uncanny ability to balance family, friends, work, school, always smiling," she said. "Just an awesome kid."

Ernesto Esquivel-Garcia, 20, is the illegal immigrant accused of murdering Jared Vargas. He should have been deported. In March 2017, Esquivel-Garcia was arrested for drunk driving. ICE put an immigration detainer on him, beginning deportation proceedings that would take a year to be completed. He was released on bond by an immigration judge in April 2017 and given 12 months' probation in January 2018 as a condition of his release. On May 10, a warrant for his arrest was issued for violating the terms of his release. Esquivel-Garcia was given a "voluntary departure" order to leave the country by July 20, 2018.

Two weeks later, on May 25, he was arrested by ICE for the outstanding warrant and handed to local authorities. For unknown reasons, local authorities returned him to ICE four days later, and somehow he was released and reminded of his July 20 departure deadline.

On June 16, Jared Vargas was last seen leaving his job at a bar. Esquivel-Garcia was also an employee there, working illegally and using a false identity. Two days later, Vargas' body was discovered in his burning apartment. Esquivel-Garcia was arrested on the scene, and after speaking with witnesses, police charged him with murder, arson, and abuse of a corpse.

"It's just really difficult for us to process now from the outside looking into this and just seeing all the systemic failures as far as coming here illegally, working here illegally, living here illegally, continuing to break laws, commit crimes, and ultimately taking Jared away from us," Cristin said.

"We're very strongly positioned that this was a preventable tragedy, a completely preventable tragedy, and I think that that's what's most difficult as we continue to grieve and try to make some sort of sense of this," she added.

Chip Roy, Republican candidate for Congress in San Antonio's congressional district, has emerged as a champion for the Vargas family, having reached out to them and offered his support as he seeks office. Roy has worked to publicize Jared Vargas' story and has made illegal immigration and border security a major theme of his campaign.

Cristin Vargas told Ingraham that Roy has been a "very bright light" in their world.

"He listened to our story, he cares about our story, we've developed a personal relationship with him, and it's been really helpful to us to have someone that's actually advocating for us," she said.

Esquivel-Garcia remains in custody as the family of Jared Vargas awaits justice for his murder.

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