Free Yazz! Mother of 3 and Domestic Violence Survivor


Domestic Violence Survivor and Asylum Seeker Faces Deportation And Family Separation From Her 3 US Citizen Mentally Ill Children


Yazmin Liliana Elias Obregon (A: 076-373-569), a single mother of three U.S. citizen children, has been detained at West County Detention Center in Richmond, California for over a year. Yazmin came to the U.S. at the age of 4 and lived in Santa Rosa, California. When she was 14 years old, Yazmin entered an abusive relationship with a man who would become the father of her children. He abused her for nearly 10 years: he beat her, sexually abused her, and forced her to use drugs in an attempt to cause her to abort her pregnancies. Her ex-partner, now in Mexico, has continued to threaten Yazmin. If deported to Mexico, Yazmin fears persecution by her former partner. Yazmin also suffered abuse from a subsequent partner who physically and sexually abused her. She has a U visa pending as a result.

Yazmin was apprehended by ICE after being convicted for driving under the influence of alcohol. As a long-time survivor of severe physical violence, Yazmin coped by self-medicating her trauma. Yazmin sincerely regrets the mistakes she’s made and has taken steps to rehabilitate. Yazmin’s children motivate her to recover and become a stronger mother in order to provide for her children. Yazmin completed a 3-month inpatient program to treat her alcohol and trauma and was continuing an outpatient 6-month program when ICE detained her.

Detained, Yazmin hired an attorney, Richard L. Bobus. Mr. Bobus took advantage of Yazmin and cheated her out of $3,250, prolonged her detention, and did not do any work in her case. Mr. Bobus was unprepared at Yazmin’s immigration hearings, submitted no evidence in support of her case despite instructions by the immigration judge to do so, and failed to apply for Yazmin’s U visa and asylum applications despite her eligibility.
Prior to being detained, Yazmin was well underway to building a new life for herself and her three U.S. citizen children. She was working two jobs to support her children and was finding community at a church. Her three children- Jeremiah, Isaiah and Elijah – suffer from PTSD, ADHD, and depression. After years of improvement thanks to their treatment, Yazmin’s children are now regressing due to their suffering from their mother’s detention.

“Since my mom got detained, I have been feeling sad and it’s hard for me to focus on school. I really need for my mom to come back. Adults think I need medicine, counselors, social workers, but all I need right now is my mom.” – Yazmin’s youngest son, age 12



Dear Officer David W. Jennings and Chief Counsel Leslie Ungerman,

I write in support of the 27 domestic violence service providers who have written to request that your office release Yazmin Liliana Elias Obregon (A #076-373-569), who is currently being held in West County Detention Center. As a survivor of domestic violence who has pending applications for relief, Yazmin deserves rehabilitation not detention. Yazmin has asylum and a U visa applications currently pending. Her U visa application received a prima facie determination and is being processed expeditiously given the likelihood of success on her case.

Yazmin came to the U.S. with her family at the age of 4 years old and she graduated from Santa Rosa High School. Yazmin is a loving mother of three U.S. citizen children. Due to her ICE custody, Yazmin and her children have been separated for over a year.

For nearly 20 years, Yazmin was severely abused by the father of her children and a subsequent male partner. Yazmin was routinely beat, sexually abused, and forced to take drugs in order to force her to have an abortion. Yazmin’s severe physical and mental trauma led her to self-medicate.This resulted in a controlled substance offense and three convictions for driving under the influence of alcohol. ICE detained Yazmin as a result.

Since then, Yazmin has broken the cycle of domestic violence and rehabilitated after completing a 3-month inpatient program. Yazmin was attending her 6-month outpatient rehabilitation program when ICE detained her. In ICE custody, Yazmin has continued to take rehabilitation courses and attend bible study. Yazmin’s family, her community, and over two dozen organizations are asking you to exercise prosecutorial discretion to allow Yazmin to stay in Santa Rosa with her three children and so that she can continue her rehabilitation program. Over 25 organizations have offered resources and treatment to Yazmin upon her release.

Yazmin’s ongoing detention is retraumatizing her and causing her children much suffering. Yazmin deserves an opportunity to show her family, her community and the rest of society that she has turned her life around. Yazmin’s family deserve a second chance.

This is why I respectfully urge you to release Yazmin on her own recognizance, on an alternative to detention program, or under a $1,500 bond.

Thank You