Why this petition matters
A Queens, NY native, Karim Golding 36, has unjustly been incarcerated for the last 14 years. He now faces deportation to Jamaica. Separated him from his family and friends in the United States, Karim was targeted and arrested in 2006 by a federal task force created for purposes of investigating hip-hop acts as part of the so-called "War on Drugs." Following a mistrial Karim was retried seven days after. Losing the second trial Karim was sentenced to 20 years in prison. Karim appealed his sentence and after the judicial system found a lack of evidence to support his conviction he was re-sentenced to time served.
Karim's good character has long been recognized by the Courts (Judge Allyne Ross, and AUSA Alexander Solomon). However instead of being released, Karim was re-arrested in violation of the Fourth Amendment and taken into ICE custody where he has languished for the last four years. This ordeal has caused much pain to his family and friends, as well as his community. Karim has always been a youth advocate and has helped young people in his community, despite the challenges and limitations of his personal circumstances.
In recent months The INTERCEPT has reported on the conditions Karim is currently suffering, while incarcerated in Etowah County Jail in Gadsden, AL. In one article titled "Burials are Cheaper than Deportation" Karim can be seen with a sheet around his neck in a peaceful protest, urging staff not to use force against his fellow detains and to prevent them from being housed with people who have been exposed to COVID-19, on March 20, 2020. He’s also seen in the video asking for better care, as he was at high risk for serious illness or death if he contracted COVID due to his history of asthma. Nothing was done despite receiving national coverage. Instead Karim and others would contract COVID when Etowah County Jail failed to quarantine new intakes. The institution then threatened detainees with solitary confinement for requesting to be tested for COVID. Karim was made an example of, by prison authorities, and sent to solitary confinement for being tested after complaints of being Ill. He would remain in solitary confinement for almost two months and on some days he was not allowed to leave his cell.
Karim continues to suffer from COVID. He has went from extremely healthy to suffering from liver disease, depression, anxiety, high blood pressure. He has been tested for cancer due to high liver enzymes. Despite his rehabilitation and court orders to release detainees at high risk, ICE refuses to release Karim. We urge you to help us in our fight to return Karim to his loved ones and his community. He has been more than a brother and a friend to many. Others, courageous like him, are much needed in these trying times. Karim has endured just about every injustice known. Meanwhile, the government continues to ignore and violate its own laws and policies, on the one hand, and ignore the laws of God, on the other.
We ask for your help as COVID begins to surge in Etowah County once again, where Karim is not receiving proper and necessary treatment
Enough is enough.