A doctor with an office near the Golden Mile in Frederick is sending a letter to Sheriff Chuck Jenkins calling on him to suspend an immigration enforcement program for 12 weeks in order to improve COVID-19 vaccination efforts.

Dr. Julio Menocal, who serves many minorities at his practice, said there is great fear among the local Latino community, with many members afraid to offer any information to receive a vaccine because of the risk of being detained and deported.

As a guest at County Executive Jan Gardner’s weekly COVID-19 press conference, Menocal called on the executive and the County Council to ask Jenkins (R) to end the 287(g) for 12 weeks, so he could vaccinate more people as his supply increases.

Gardner said in response that neither she nor any other county officials have the authority to force Jenkins to stop participating in the 287(g) program, per opinions from the state attorney general’s office.

The 287(g) program allows U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to train sheriff’s deputies to ask about the immigration status of anyone booked into the county’s adult detention center and begin deportation proceedings if necessary.

Menocal said Hispanics and Latinos have been fleeing the county in recent years, in part because of the program. He said he’s also heard from state officials that Hispanics from other jurisdictions are likely going to come to Frederick County to get vaccinated, so it would be a “good faith initiative” by the sheriff to pause the program in the name of public health.

He said it’s unlikely he’ll convince the sheriff to do so, but it’s on him to try.

“If we want to get people vaccinated — Hispanics in the county — one of the things is, you’re going to have to vaccinate them [at] younger [ages], and we’re going to hopefully give them the assurance for a period of time,” Menocal said after Thursday’s news conference. “But the sheriff has a right to say no. We’ll see what happens, but I owe it to my community to ask.”

Jenkins said in a brief phone call Thursday he has “no intention” of pausing the 287(g) program but still needed to review Gardner’s news conference.

In a follow-up email, he said he appreciated Menocal as a doctor and local health care provider but disagreed with suspending the program.

Menocal has been opposed to 287(g) since its beginnings in Frederick County, Jenkins wrote. He said the program doesn’t have anything to do with vaccine access or vaccine equity.

“The 287(g) Program is a detention center based program that has nothing to do with any individual or population going to a doctor and having access to the vaccine, or having access to any other government service,” Jenkins said. “Dr. Menocal is very aware of that fact. The 287(g) Program is not an obstacle for vaccinations for the Hispanic community as described by the doctor.

“Expanding on the equity issue, I have a real public safety concern about the way in which Dr. Menocal encourages Hispanics to get vaccinate[d] without identifying themselves or producing a social security number like everyone else in the general public,” the sheriff added. “Where is the equity for all of the public?”

County Council President M.C. Keegan-Ayer (D) said Thursday she has told Jenkins multiple times she disagrees with his use of the 287(g) program with ICE. But, she added, given the attorney general’s opinions, neither she nor council members have any authority over the sheriff.

Keegan-Ayer said she would try to convince Jenkins. She noted the sheriff released several prisoners from the detention center whom he deemed were not violent or a public safety threat to the community last year as the coronavirus pandemic was starting.

“I have been very upfront about the fact that I don’t support the program, but I also recognize my authority and where my authority stops,” Keegan-Ayer said. “So if I can get the sheriff to suspend the program for 12 weeks — if I can get him to suspend the program for six weeks — I am willing to do that.”

So far, Menocal said he has vaccinated more than 300 people and anticipates that number will grow significantly as his supply increases in the coming weeks. Dr. Barbara Brookmyer, the county health officer, said Menocal’s practice and Asbury United Methodist Church on West All Saints Street are planned as community vaccination clinics for the coming weeks.

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Steve Bohnel is the county government reporter for the Frederick News-Post. He can be reached at sbohnel@newspost.com. He graduated from Temple University, with a journalism degree in May 2017, and is a die-hard Everton F.C. fan.

(86) comments


Doctor Menocal is a class act. He has apologized to Sheriff Jenkins:


Frederick, Md (KM) He was wrong. That’s how Frederick physician Dr. Julio Menocal describes his comments about the 287g program.

Last week, Dr. Menocal asked that the program be suspended for 12 weeks so he can vaccinate the local Hispanic population against COVID-19. “I was incorrectly assuming that 287g was being enforced on the streets, and apparently, it’s not,” he says. “Sheriff {Chuck} Jenkins, I was wrong, and you were right, sir, and my sincerest apologies for my misery.”

The 287g program enables staff at the Frederick County Detention Center to check on the immigration status of those arrested by deputies. If they are here illegally, they can deported. The Sheriff’s Office is working in partnership with the US Department of Homeland Security in running the 287g program.

Dr. Menocal also says his practice is one of 37 around Maryland which has been chosen to receive vaccine doses so they can be used to inoculate Hispanics and African-Americans against the coronavirus vaccine. He says there are a number of reasons why members of some minority communities can’t get the vaccine. “The first one , as always, is going to be the access to technology. So we are calling people, we are doing it on the phone, and we’re making sure they get registered with the office.”

He says another reason is transportation. “We offer two services. We do have a shuttle that serves the Golden Mile, and we will bring patients in to the office to be be vaccinated, or conversely, go to their homes to vaccinate them,” Dr. Menocal says.

HIs office has received the first 200 doses of the vaccine, and 110 so far have been used. “The Frederick County Health Department through Dr. {Barbara} Brookmyer and Todd Johnson, very graciously gave us a grant of 500 vaccines, and I think we’re down to the last 80 of them,” says Dr. Meonocal.

Under the state’s program, primary care physicians will receive vaccines to administer to the most vulnerable populations. “In the state of Maryland. 13% of the population is Hispanic, and less than 3% of the vaccines have gone to Hispanics. 36% of the population is African-American, and less than 25% of the vaccines have gone to African-Americans,” Dr. Menocal says.

On Thursday, he says the Governor and other state officials will be visiting his practice to observe how this program is working. Dr. Menocal hopes Sheriff Jenkins will also drop by. “Tell Chuck Jenkins I want to see on Thursday. The Governor would love to see him, and wants to see us all working together. I hope this apology is enough because I did screw up,” he says.





"Doctor Menocal is a class act. He has apologized to Sheriff Jenkins:"

No doubt about it. He is a Frederick treasure.


There have been multiple attempts to reform immigration going back to W. Bush administration. Republican legislators torpedo it every time. They don’t want the issue resolved. It’s more valuable to them as a political football. That aside, one of the unintended consequences of not being practical about this a population (not insignificant) that fears collaborating with authorities. This is dangerous for everyone in our community. So, to my point, if you desire a safer community, support measures that will lead to that goal.


I don't know if suspending the ICE program would result in more people getting vaccinated, but I know our immigration system is broken, and our economy is dependent on people who we somehow haven't figured how to keep here legally. The first step toward fixing that would be acknowledging the situation, and half of us cannot even do that.


Your esteemed sheriff claims "everyone else" has to provide a social security number. My husband and I have both been vaccinated, in different locations. NO ONE asked for a social security number. Does he have to lie in order to defend his program?



Because the whole thing is unconscionable. It's all red meat to the his racist base. Otherwise he wouldn't spend all of his time in front of Faux News.


Exactly. Chuck, like Don, know that their acolytes will believe anything they tell them, no questions asked.


At Walgreens they only asked for my drivers license.


Dr. Menocal has done many great things in the Frederick Community, however he is wrong on this issue.

People who have broken immigration laws should be concerned about detection and deportation. The Sheriff should ignore this unwarranted request.

The solution is simple;

1. Don't commit an arrest-able criminal offense which would land you in central booking while going to or from a vaccination.

2. Dr. Menocal could return to the bygone days of making house call.



Another sock puppet has arrived I see.

Comment deleted.


Awwww... that's ok, mark. Go ahead over to the side and wait for your orange emperor to come back. What is the new date now, March 23?

I heard it was on the 13th.


“So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.” Matthew 7:12


“ “So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.” Matthew 7:12”

Terrible advice. Far better to follow the Platinum Rule: Do not do unto others as they do not wish to be done unto.


AOC, vaccinating everyone protects everyone.🤦‍♂️


Agreed, however I proposed nothing that would keep anyone from getting a vaccine.

Comment deleted.

Thank you for the compliment! Representative Ted Yoho called me much worse.


I didn't see the Sheriff's name on any of the police reports Pb. Do you have additional non-public information saying that he was originally involved with either of these incidents?


This make me think of Trumpkins getting 2 illegal immigrants a lottery payout because of his ignorance


A 12 week suspension would not be impossible or even difficult and with the President working on immigrant issues, it would give the Federal government time to adjust its policies to fit current conditions.

Doctor Menocal is on the front lines and knows the situation much better than I. If he thinks a 12 week suspension will help, I support him and the suggestion. I will also support changes in the immigration laws to make all of this moot. We can do better.


What does "better" look like Gary?



Better would be a sane immigration path that doesn't take 6+ years. That would require us to assume that the immigrant in question is coming in as a law-abiding rather than forcing them to prove that.


@nmp Mar 19, 2021 12:42pm

The process takes the same amount of time, regardless of the immigrant's origin. Everyone applying for immigration to the United States undergoes a background check, including for criminal offenses that would disallow immigration, hence part of the reason for the delay.





Gary and NMP[thumbup][thumbup]

Greg F

Better is the opposite of what Trump has done, and opposite of the GOP as a whole


That's a non-answer GregF. What specifically does better look like.


I won’t speak for Gary but it looks to me most Americans are humane. It makes me proud.

Yes, the crisis is one of humanity. And yes, the wealthiest nation in the world can do better, and is now trying, after racist immigration practices over the past 4 years now to do better ( the right thing). It’s better to have refuge children in HHS care then being in tent campuses on the edge of our borders. Are you blind to the desperateness? Providing shelter to children especially not accompanied by parents is a good thing. That’s humane, even divine, absolutely good 😌.

Have you cashed your stimulus check yet that you didn’t deserve?


Aw, I asked Gary a question on what doing better looks like. I did not provide an opinion. You are projecting your own biases. I am not going to go through what one party did, or another party did. That is superficial and pointless. We have arrived where we are over many different administrations over decades. Why are children separated from parents? Look up the Flores agreement. Of course kids should be cared for.


The last administration supported children being separated from their parents. You think that’s better? Right. Not like the Trump administration.👍


Aw, I pointed you to the Flores Agreement, as in Reno v. Flores, which happened in the Clinton Administration, and has been the rule ever since. Apparently you failed in using Google to find it. That means Clinton enforced it, Bush enforced it, Obama enforced it, and Trump enforced it. Please do your homework.

Here is a start:





Gabe, the Trump administration instituted a "zero tolerance" policy in 2018 that separated migrant children and parents at the southern U.S. border. Today there are over 545 children separated from their families under the Trump’s policy that we can’t find their parents? The government could use your help reuniting them with their families. Can you google their locations?


Aw, while what you wrote may be a fact, the separation of minors has been the policy under the Flores Agreement since 1993. The actual case leading to the agreement began in the '80s.


I take all of your questions as serious inquiries and do my best to give an honest answer. But this really needs a much larger answer than I have time or energy to do. So I will say "better" recognizes our need for immigrants and our real need for secure borders. I would have an immigration system that is orderly, transparent and cost effective. Not "hide and seek in the desert." Deserts are no place for games. I was at Laredo for six years, and also went through the covert services desert survival course in Arizona. I do not want an election issue. I just want a system that works for everyone. If you have suggestion to that point, I will welcome them.


Thanks Gary, I appreciate your response, and agree that any immigration policy orderly, transparent, and cost-effective.


I have a suggestion... How about a trans-regional policy. Including travel permits:allowing travel between American countries as guest workers, as tourism and/or the ability to visit family, maybe even having the ability to seek some form of permanent residency as a start 🤷‍♂️. Maybe help secure Central American communities - economy and security of the most prevalent refugees that most “MAGA Americans” are worried about.


I'm no fan of the 287(g) program, but I think the good doctor is grasping here a bit. I don't see how 287(g) would prevent anyone from getting vaccinated. Vaccinations are a humanitarian issue, and any information provided by a patient have to be protected by a health provider per HIPAA requirements.


[thumbup][thumbup][thumbup] vodalone!



287g is all about scaring immigrants. It is using the power of the state to keep anyone who doesn't look white or speaks with an accent scared that they may get caught up in the wheels of the state. It is about cheap labor to be taken advantage of.

People who are afraid tend to want to fly under the radar and don't want to get on it no matter what is at stake. Getting vaccinated could be seen as one more place where you may be forced to put your name and god forbid that these rabid anti-immigrants see that you might have gotten some sort of citizen benefit as they want to lead with cruelty.


@nmp Mar 19, 2021 12:46pm

No, the 287(g) program isn't just used on non-white people. Anyone arrested and sent to the detention center (including you or I) has a background check, looking for outstanding warrants, and criminal history. A deportation order also shows up, which is a form of arrest warrant. When it does, ICE is contacted, the same as the issuer of any other outstanding arrest warrant is contacted. The issuing office comes to the detention center and picks up their fugitive. To understand how the 287(g) program works, please see the links below. The FCSO participates in the Warrant Service Officer Model. This model works with the FCSO, FPD, MSP, and all the municipal police forces in the county, via the detention center.





And who could be targeted for arrest? Let's just skip right past that point. I swear you act as if racial profiling doesn't exist and that's because it doesn't for you.


Who could be targeted for arrest? Anyone committing an arrest-able criminal offense. Nobody is getting arrested and brought to the detention center for jaywalking, or for having a broken tail light, or speeding. People are arrested for crimes that are felonies, or for those misdemeanors deemed serious enough for arrest, such as theft, battery, DUI, etc. Where have I ever said that racial profiling does not exist? Certainly it does, but to think that it is rampant, happening at every interaction with law enforcement is the opposite end of that spectrum. Neither position is defendable. All looks yellow to the jaundiced eye.


gab, the Corrections Officers can place a Detainer on anyone found to be illegal, which means that they are held until ICE picks them up to go before a Federal Court to learn their fate. Only a Federal Court can put a Deportation order on a person. And only a small percentage get deported, primarily those that have committed felonies. Trump deported 935,000 during his term. Obama deported 1.6 million during his first term.


Phy, yep, agreed.


@NewMarketParent. I'm not a supporter of the 287(g) program and I've made my position on that known numerous times when it comes to illicit traffic stops of immigrants and the like. In this case however, it's just being used a political tool by the doctor. I know many in the local Latino community with varying immigration status', and none of them are hesitant about getting a vaccine because of 287(g). Do they support the program? Mostly, no, but it's not related to vaccinations. Like I said, this is a stretch and a half by the doctor to call for a suspension of the program based on vaccination hesitancy.


The article states that Dr. Menocal has an office. I was under the impression that private medical practices have not yet received any vaccine. If so, how has the doctor managed to give out 300 doses so far?


I've heard from a few seniors their GP provided theirs.


"there is great fear among the local Latino community, with many members afraid to offer any information to receive a vaccine because of the risk of being detained and deported"

If they are here legally, they have nothing to worry about. If they are here illegally, they have already broken our laws and continue to do so.


And that's all it really boils down to. [thumbup]


They may have children who were born here who need parents.


If that's the case, they should have thought about that before they came here illegally. They knew full well they were breaking our laws by doing so, they need to suffer the consequences.


Spot on, CD. It's time for birthright citizenship to go as well.


Dumb and dumber.


But bottom line guys, due to the limitations of the Immigration Court System, if you have not committed a felony you will never be deported.



Because everyone knows that every "show us your papers" rule/law has absolutely never been abused in the history of mankind at all.


"Jenkins said...he has “no intention” of pausing the 287(g) program..." GOOD!!! Keep up the excellent work, Sheriff Chuck!!!


as long as sleazy joe does not want to protect our boarders,we need 287g that much more to help protect us from the illegals.


Nothing illegal about amnesty


Kelly, in order to get amnesty, the receiver has to have broken a law to begin with. 🙄


Not at all correct.


Get your stimulus check yet?


Yes protect us from all the services they provide, who needs seasonal fruits and vegetables anyway for instance


DW[thumbup] The fact is that we need the undocumented workers just as much as they need us. The system has been broken for decades.



I didn't know we have boarders. How long are they staying?


Sheriff shouldn’t even respond.



The sheriff's response is extremely detailed in the article. You might want to read it


The 287(g) Program in Frederick County allows CORRECTIONS OFFICERS in the Detention Center, not Deputies, to question EVERY person arrested and booked into the Detention Center, as to their Immigration Status. The 287(g) Program in FC is NOT a Law Enforcement Program. No Local Law Enforcement Officer in FC or anywhere else in the Nation is allowed to question anyone about their Immigration Status. Unfortunately, Sheriff Jenkins has let the belief that it is a Law Enforcement Program ridding FC of hordes of murdering, raping illegal aliens and MS13 Gang members abound. It is not that either.



Thank you


And, as evidenced by his multiple losses in lawsuits he also hadvtge deputies thinking they were part of 287


Kelly Alzan

That's all conjecture. You have no idea how any Deputy thanks and everything that was done was within the framework of the law.


Austin, not a single person needs to concern themselves "how any Deputy thanks", the final rulings in the court cases are the final word. The buck stops there.




"...he also "hadvtge" deputies thinking..." ? What, Pb???



Stating that the sheriff is unfortunately LED people to believe something is based on no objective evidence. That might be your opinion but it doesn't make it true. Maybe you should read the article


Oh, but there is objective evidence ANP101. Do you know anything about the 287(g) Programs in Frederick County since 2008? Do you know how they worked? What do you think the 287(g) Programs, there were two initially, did and do? I have stated facts about how the Sheriff abused the 287(g) Law Enforcement Task Force Program to the point that ICE kicked the FCSO out of it in 2012 for profiling. The 287(g) Corrections Program that has been in place since 2008 has nothing to do with arrests made by FCSO Deputies or Frederick PD Officers or MSP Troopers or deporting illegal aliens as the Sheriff has everyone believing. If you would like to dispute my statements, I’m listening. Peace.✌️😷


Anp101 has similar initials and fcso unit number of an older retired deputy. Just sayin


You can just say, but that doesn't make it true. In another LTE ANP101 identified themselves.


Good comment phydeaux. [thumbup]

I can understand how people who are in America illegally might be afraid or concerned about identifying themselves in any context.

However, I can't see how getting the vaccine is any different from any other visit to the doctor.

We would have heard if ICE agents (or FredCo sheriff's deputies) were rounding up people who were recently vaccinated. It's safe to say, that is not happening.

By all accounts, Dr. Julio Menocal is a great man and we are all fortunate to have him in our community. That said, based on his previously expressed disapproval of the 287(g) program, a cynical person might suspect that he is attempting to use the COVID-19 vaccination program as a reason to suspend it for 12 weeks -- and then presumably try to shut it down permanently.

If the 287(g) program was nothing more than cover for a DWB (driving while brown) or 'walking while brown' profiling operation, I'd be the first to say it should be shut down. Based on what I've heard and read, that is not the case. People who are here illegally but do not commit any other crimes have nothing to worry about. As phydeaux accurately said:

"The 287(g) Program in Frederick County allows CORRECTIONS OFFICERS in the Detention Center, not Deputies, to question EVERY person arrested and booked into the Detention Center, as to their Immigration Status."

IOW, only people who are arrested and taken to the jail have to be concerned with 287(g). Doctor Menocal knows that, the question is do his patients?

The more people who are vaccinated, the better off we all are. It would be helpful if the county government and health care providers would help spread the word that people who are here illegally have nothing to be concerned about when getting vaccinated. Maybe point to the fact that not one person has gotten in any legal trouble as a result of getting a vaccination.

Es verdad.


👍absolutely correct mrnatural. But the Hispanic Community in FC doesn’t realize that. And it is almost impossible to convince them otherwise.


I assume they trust Doctor Menocal.

The vaccine program has been going on for quite a while now. If ICE was using it to round up people, word would get around the Latino community like wildfire.

That's just not happening.

Another thought -- if people are that paranoid, how would suspending the 287(g) program for 6 or 12 weeks change anyone's mind? Wouldn't they just assume *that's* a lie also, and think that either 287(g) is still in force, or, ICE will be coming to pick them up when 287(g) is reinstated?



People who are scared tend not to seek out participation in anything that might put them on the radar. Getting the 2-shot vaccine would typically need some information in order to make sure that it is tracked and that the person is followed up with to get the 2nd shot. That would be stressful for anyone who was constantly in fear of being rounded up.



You hit the nail on the head when you said "...based on his previously expressed disapproval of the 287(g) program...he is attempting to use the COVID-19 vaccination program as a reason to suspend it for 12 weeks -- and then presumably try to shut it down permanently." I'm not, cynical, just believing that the doctor is motivated by his own self-interest.


I agree 100%, Rockfish. Menocal is on record as being anti 287 (g). If the sheriff were to suspend it, for however long, Menocal will do everything he can to keep it that way.


Exactly mrnatural, and we have been pointing that out for some time. However, it is extremely difficult to change what folks "believe", or what they think they hear (although it may be demonstrably false). i wonder how the good doctor would feel about suspending all checks for outstanding warrants at the detention center. Should the corrections officers not check to see if someone has an outstanding warrant for their arrest? What would be the consequences of that? This is the same thing.





" i wonder how the good doctor would feel about suspending all checks for outstanding warrants at the detention center. Should the corrections officers not check to see if someone has an outstanding warrant for their arrest? What would be the consequences of that?"

Very good question!

When people become emotional about a subject they often become irrational. My guess is that many people, including Dr. Menocal, draw a distinction in their minds between ICE warrants and others.

There are clearly people who are in favor of open borders. Therefore, they think all immigration enforcement should be banned. Their hearts are generally in the right place, but unfortunately they do not consider the downsides of unlimited immigration:

* According to 11,000 climate scientists, America is already at DOUBLE its sustainable population. Aquifers are running dry, farmland is being bulldozed.

* A person living in a developed country like the US has a much larger carbon footprint than if they lived in a less developed nation.

* We already have high unemployment

* We can help MANY more people where they live, using foreign aid and NGOs to improve their infrastructure, build housing, schools, and hospitals, etc.

Of course, someone with their mind set on using cruise ships and airliners to bring people here from around the world -- the more the merrier -- will disregard all of the above.

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