Remembering The ‘Cottonwood Four,’ After Their Deported Killer Returns

Remembering The ‘Cottonwood Four,’ After Their Deported Killer Returns

Last week, acting on a tip, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents arrested Olga Franco del Cid, 35, at a home in Inver Grove Heights, Minnesota.

Her arrest comes only two years after she was deported, after serving two-thirds of her prison sentence for killing four children on their way to school, near Cottonwood, Minnesota in February 2008.

On a gloomy Tuesday morning, Guatemalan national, 23-year-old Olga Marina Franco Del Cid went sailing past a stop sign on County Road 24, and right into a school bus carrying 28 Lakeview School students.

The bus flipped over on its side, injuring several children and killing four.

Those killed were Emilee Olson, 9; Hunter Javens, 9; Jesse Javens, 13; and Reed Stevens, 12.

In addition to the children who were killed, four others were hospitalized at Avera McKennan Hospital and University Health Center in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. Another child was transported to the Mayo Clinic.

Apparently, the illegal alien was not even licensed to drive in her home country of Guatemala. Lt. Mark Peterson of the Minnesota State Patrol told reporters: “She doesn’t have a drivers’ license anywhere that we’re aware of.”

On October 11, 2008, the website MASSCOPS.com, reported:

Olga Franco was charged with four counts of criminal vehicular homicide, running a stop sign and driving without a license.

Franco Del Cid, who drew nationwide attention from people focused on the illegal immigration debate, was found behind the steering wheel, her right foot wedged near the accelerator under a crumpled dash board.

She has maintained that her boyfriend was the one driving the van and that he fled because he didn’t want to be deported to Mexico. Her attorneys argued at trial that he was thrown from the van on impact and Franco was thrown part-way into the driver’s seat. The boyfriend is believed to be in Mexico.

Of course, that was not the Guatemalan’s first brush with the law. In 2006 she pleaded guilty in a Chippewa County court to driving without a license.

Deported Child Killer, Olga Franco Del Cid

Franco, who originally gave police a fake name, told investigators that she was on her way to work when she caused the fatal wreck. Despite her illegal status, she was employed by Norcraft Cabinetry in Eagan, Minn. The company’s website displays a section entitled “Code of Business Ethics and Conduct.”

Within that section, the following statement is made: “All employees must respect and obey the laws of the cities, states, and countries in which we operate.”

That statement seems more than a bit hypocritical coming from a company which hires illegal aliens!

In August 2008, a Kandiyohi County jury found Franco guilty on all counts, and she was subsequently sentenced to 12 and a half years in prison. She served less than eight years behind bars.

On April 26, 2016, Franco Del Cid was sent to a half-way house and released from custody on May 30, 2017, when she was turned over to ICE and deported.

As of this report, Franco Del Cid remains in ICE custody.

Read more about the human cost of illegal immigration in “No Safe Places: Death at the Hands of Illegal Aliens.”

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