WATCH LIVE: Coming up at 8, Attorney General Jeff Sessions announces lawsuit against California over sanctuary laws.

Posted by KRON 4 News on Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Panicked callers to Alba Hernandez's hotline reported a possible immigration raid. She rushed to the West Oakland home to find officers had blocked off traffic in what they described as a human-trafficking investigation.

The police revealed no criminal charges from the August incident. Instead, two Guatemalan brothers were questioned on civil immigration violations, and one was detained for weeks, according to court records and interviews with residents.

The Trump administration, seeking to force a defiant California to cooperate with its agenda of stepped-up immigrant deportations, went to federal court Tuesday to invalidate three state laws — the administration's most direct challenge yet to the state's policies.

Administration officials say the three laws in question, all passed by the Legislature last year, blatantly obstruct federal immigration law and thus violate the Constitution's supremacy clause, which gives federal law precedence over state enactments.

  • Governor's race
  • 2018 election
Atty. Gen. Jeff Sessions plans to announce a challenge to California immigration policies on Wednesday.
Atty. Gen. Jeff Sessions plans to announce a challenge to California immigration policies on Wednesday. (Susan Walsh / Associated Press)

The candidates running for governor reacted in familiar ways to news Tuesday that the Trump administration is suing California over its immigration policies, with Democrats calling for insurgency and Republicans rejoicing.

Businessman John Cox, a GOP candidate, released a minute-long radio ad seeking to tie California and San Francisco sanctuary policies with the tragic death of a young woman who was killed in that city in July 2015.

“The senseless, random killing of 32-year-old Kate Steinle by an illegal alien convict, is chilling testimony to how Gavin Newsom’s sanctuary city values differ from the rest of us,” Cox says in the ad, which his campaign says is airing statewide for two weeks in an $80,000 buy.