Father to be deported after New Year

(CNN) – An East Hartford family soon to be ripped apart.

A family’s sole caretaker who has been in the U.S. legally will be deported back to his country after he was granted to stay another 30 days.

A lot of hugging for the Ferreira family as they leave their lawyer’s office. They received the news, Domingo will be sent back to the Dominican Republic after the New Year.

The family has been pushing for Domingo to stay in the United States after getting this deportation letter from “U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement” last month. Domingo admits to stealing a wallet and purse 12 years ago.

Court records show he was convicted of the larceny charge and did prison time. Under law, that crime can be grounds for deportation.

There was no word of deportation until someone stole Domingo’s identity and started committing crimes under his name. Domingo has been here legally for over 30 years, has a home, a family, and a grandson on the way.

After our story aired, U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal worked to get Domingo to stay another 30 days, so he will now get to spend Christmas with his family. However, on January 5th Domingo will report to ice in Hartford.

The family says they were told he will be taken into custody and sit behind bars for weeks until he gets flown to the Dominican Republic.

Eyewitness News has learned, the family filed two pardons with the state’s board of pardons over the past few years. Both were denied due to the criminal charges. Domingo is able to apply again.

“There are just no words for this, what we feel for this. No words. 23 years of marriage. 25 years together all for one mistake, for so many years ago that he wishes he could take back,” said a family member.

The family hopes their story can reach others so laws can change. So much attention is given to illegal aliens but not to people who are here as citizens that have paid their taxes, and homeowners and something has to be done. It’s going to happen to other families and it’s not fair.

Blumenthal says he is working closely with the family as they consider their options and what next steps they might take.

The Governor has no authority to issue pardons as this is an independent agency.

Related: Hundreds rally for immigrant rights; make demands of Amherst College