An Immigrant Helped Put Away A Murderer, Got Deported
In 2001, Danny Sigui witnessed a fatal stabbing in Rhode Island, and did exactly what all the PSAs say -- he saw something, so he said something. He ended up serving as the key witness that put the murderer away ... then he promptly got deported to his native Guatemala.
This wasn't some bizarre act of karmic irony. Sigui was reported by the office of the Rhode Island attorney general, the same people he had just helped convict a dangerous criminal. The best part is that his undocumented status was discovered during the preparation of the case. They kindly turned a blind eye juuuust long enough to allow him to testify before tearing his life apart.
Although the state attorney general's office petitioned to let him stay, it was too little, too late, and Sigui was unceremoniously sent back to Guatemala. When asked if he would have come forward again, knowing what would happen, Sigui said that he would of course do the right thing, regardless of the pain and misery that might befall him. Kidding. He said, "Hell no, y'all are on your own with this stabbing business. Hope you like chain mail."
An Environmental Activist Exposes Illegal Dumping At A Church, Gets Sent To Prison
In 1999, Reverend Steve Jamison was renovating his church in Columbus, Mississippi when he and his workers discovered a sludgy substance in the soil. Jamison suspected his land was contaminated by creosote, a waste product of the creation of railroad ties, courtesy of the nearby Kerr-McGee chemical company. He called Kerr-McGee to take a look, but when the plant manager arrived, he said it wasn't their creosote -- must be some other guy's creosote -- and anyway, it wouldn't hurt anyone. He then twirled his mustache and jaunted away to steal mittens from orphans.
Shortly after, Jamison and some other church members developed breathing problems, skin rashes, and kidney failure. Finally, the Kerr-McGee guys came back (wearing full hazmat suits) and paved over the problem, because actually removing the infected soil might have taken a few more minutes. Kerr-McGee offered to compensate Jamison, but only if he kept his big mouth shut about the whole thing.
Jamison instead hired Tennie White, an environmental crusader with a lab that performed environmental tests for various companies. White had a little experience dealing with Kerr-McGee: over 15,000 settled contamination lawsuits, and another 9,450 still pending. She was also something of a troublemaker. After the city refused to test some potentially contaminated soil, White ripped a hole straight through the concrete covering it, forcing the city's hand. To be fair, they did discover that contamination levels were six times higher than normal. Regardless, The Man wasn't exactly her biggest fan, and by teaming up with Jamison, she had crossed the line.