Cedella Roman, 19, was reportedly detained after accidentally crossing the U.S. border in South Surrey. (Facebook/Cedella Roman)

Jogger spent two weeks in U.S. detention centre after accidentally crossing B.C. border

Cedella Roman, 19, crossed the border while out for a run

CBC is reporting that a French woman spent two weeks in an American detention centre after accidentally stepping foot on U.S. soil near the Peace Arch border crossing last month.

Cedella Roman, 19, who was visiting her mother in North Delta, said she was jogging along the Semiahmoo Bay waterfront and inadvertently crossed the Douglas (Peace Arch) port of entry on May 21.

At the end of her jog, Roman turned around and headed back to Canada when she was apprehended by two U.S. border patrol officers, she told CBC News.

“An officer stopped me and started telling me I had crossed the border illegally,” she said. “I told him I had not done it on purpose and that I didn’t understand what was happening.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (USCBP) officers told her that she had entered illegally, CBC reported.

An USCBP spokesperson told Peace Arch News Friday that the agency cannot provide information on the case due to the privacy act, but did offer a statement on behalf of the service.

“If an individual enters the United States at a location other than an official port of entry and without inspection by a Customs and Border Protection officer, they have illegally entered the United States and will be processed accordingly,” the statement said.

“It is the responsibility of an individual traveling in the vicinity of an international border to maintain awareness of their surroundings and their location at all times to ensure they do not illegally cross the border. Additionally, it’s important for people traveling near the border to carry identification at all times, so that agents or officers can easily verify their identity.”

After Roman was detained, she was reportedly transported to Tacoma Northwest Detention Centre, a facility operated by the Department of Homeland Security.

“They put me in the caged vehicles and brought me into their facility,” she said. “They asked me to remove all my personal belongings with my jewellery, they searched me everywhere.”

When Roman’s mother Christiane Fern learned of her daughter’s incarceration, she collaborated with Immigration Canada to co-ordinate the release of her daughter.

Roman was held in custody for two weeks before immigration officials on both sides of the border confirmed she was allowed back into Canada. She was then transferred back into B.C..

“It was just unfair that there was nothing, no sign at the border,” Ferne, who visited her daughter several times while she was detained, told CBC. “It’s like a trap… anybody can be caught up at the border like this.”

Roman was reportedly discharged from the detention centre June 6.

Roman has yet to respond to a PAN request for comment.

Just Posted

Pelicans spotted in Peachland

Four American white pelicans were caught on camera on Okanagan Lake

Kelowna’s MMA Red King ready to defend title

Rory MacDonald will defend his title in April 27 on international streaming service DAZN

Highway 97 crash slows traffic in Kelowna

A woman from one vehicle was treated by an ambulance on the scene.

Big Sugar headlines Gonzo Okanagan tournament and festival

The second annual event will take place June 14

Maxime Bernier, leader of People’s Party of Canada, to rally support in Kelowna

The PPC has 36,000 member and plans to run candidates in all 338 ridings

VIDEO: Weekday weather update for the Okanagan Valley

Rain, clouds and sun are in the forecast for the region

Netflix filming in North Okanagan

Multiple downtown locations and scenic areas to star in TV production

EDITORIAL: Time to end a pipeline feud

B.C. would not be the only one to lose if Jason Kenney makes good on his promise to turn off the tap

Ex-mayor of northern village claims its drivers are overpaying ICBC $1,800 a year

Darcy Repen says data shows Telkwa households are being ripped off for car insurance

Vernon mountain property owners launch fundraising campaign

Silver Star Association fighting high sewage rates; names committee to oversee campaign, funds

Deadly synthetic drug found in Kamloops that puts users in ‘zombielike’ state

Interior Health warning says substance causes ‘speedy, trippy-like symptoms’ and hallucinations

Trudeau to be portrayed on ‘Simpsons’ episode

Toronto journalist who’s posted videos of himself doing impressions of the PM voiced him for the show

Elizabeth May’s wedding dress a ‘walk through a garden’ on Earth Day

Green Party leader set to get married in Victoria

Salmon Arm inventor creates rooftop sprinklers to protect from wildfires

The Water Winger can be placed at the peak of a roof without climbing a ladder

Most Read