BAKERSFIELD, Calif. — After their mother's immigration status was revoked two years ago, some local teens have been sheltering in place without their mother during the COVID-19 pandemic.
When Carolina Gomez decided to marry her partner of 15 years, Consuelo Lopez, they were told to go to the U.S. Embassy in Juarez, Mexico to finalize documents needed for the marriage. But when they went for their appointment, Gomez was told her immigration status had been revoked and she would not be allowed back into the U.S. for 10 years.
Lopez said she came to the U.S. as a child and spent most of her life in the Central Valley. She said she was at a loss of hope until she met Taynoa Thompson.
Thompson, a San Diego attorney, helped Lopez and Gomez apply for asylum, the process granting her the opportunity to return to Bakersfield while her case gets finalized.
On Thursday, Gomez was able to go home.
The couples seven children say they were hoping to have their mom at home but were not expecting it to happen that night.
"For us, it's harder because she's the one that helps around as well. She's the one that gets us on check and I like that about my mom," said Dago Alberto Garcia. "Without her, I don't think this family is complete, and I think it's best if she is here with us."
Gomez's legal battle to stay in the country is not over. The couple tells 23ABC they will be looking for an attorney here in Bakersfield because it was too expensive to continue with their lawyer in San Diego.