By Robert Gehl, December 11, 2013.
A 13-year veteran of the Arizona State Troopers has resigned after it was learned she was an illegal alien.
Tucson’s NBC affiliate is reporting Carmen Figueroa, who once served as the Arizona Department of Public Safety’s spokeswoman, likely didn’t even know she was an illegal alien until this summer.
Bart Graves, DPS spokesperson tells the News 4 Tucson Investigators “We believe the affidavit and information she gave us at the time. And, she was under the impression that she herself was an American citizen.”
DPS officials wouldn’t say if Figueroa would be charged with a crime, but Graves told the Associated Press she would have been fired if she didn’t step down because state law requires all sworn officers to be US citizens.
“She did not really find out until this summer … that she was an illegal alien through, I believe, a confrontation with her mother,” Graves told the AP.
Figueroa’s citizenship status came to light when her brother, a member of the U.S. military, applied with the State Department for a passport and federal authorities learned he had a sister who was an Arizona state police officer.
Figueroa spent about a decade as a highway patrol officer in southern Arizona before become a detective and “had an exemplary record” on the job, Graves said.