Family pleads for help to bring back mom stuck in Mexico

Posted at 10:23 PM, Jan 17, 2019
and last updated 2019-01-18 08:57:15-05

A mom with four children in Tennessee is stuck in Mexico. Alma Goddard crossed the border illegally in 2005. But after getting married and having kids she wanted to do things right and become a U.S. Citizen.

Goddard went back to Mexico, but when she tried to come back here to the mid-state legally she was told she couldn't.

“It's terrible, just the separation from the kids. When I walk in the door and they immediately ask where's momma and they'll run down the steps looking for her,” said Alma’s husband Shane.

Alma Goddard has been stuck in Mexico for longer than two weeks.

“Our immigration lawyer said this was just out of left field, nobody expected this happen,” said Goddard.

Alma came to the United States illegally in 2005. Three years later she married Shane Goddard and together they have four daughters.

Shane Goddard said his wife was ready to right her wrong and become a U.S. citizen the legal way.

She received her immigration waiver; packed all her documents and pictures and got on a plane to Mexico in hopes of coming back an American citizen.

“When she gets down and has her visa interview the custom agent that was interviewing her said that my wife stated to be an American citizen when she come across, which is like a cardinal sin,” Goddard said.

Shane Goddard said his wife never even talked to anyone when she crossed the border 13 years ago, let alone tell border security she was an American citizen.

“The penalty for that is a lifetime ban from entering the United States,” said Goddard.

The news is hitting the couple's four children hard.

“I get really sad sometimes, that's usually when I'm by myself because I really don't like to cry in front of people,” said 13-yeard- old Sylvia.

Goddard said he hopped on a plane to Mexico and spoke with Immigration officials hoping to bring his wife home.

“I told her that this is not going away. I said now we have a humanitarian issue here because my wife is being kept from seeing her four daughters,” he said.

Next week Goddard and his pastor are heading to DC in hopes to get their elected officials to help bring Alma home.