Caren Lopez-Coronado De Lopez v. Jefferson B. Sessions, III

United States Court of Appeals For the Eighth Circuit ___________________________ No. 16-4457 ___________________________ Caren Lopez-Coronado de Lopez, lllllllllllllllllllllPetitioner, v. Jefferson B. Sessions, III, Attorney General of the United States, lllllllllllllllllllllRespondent. ____________ Petition for Review of an Order of the Board of Immigration Appeals ____________ Submitted: October 18, 2017 Filed: April 3, 2018 ____________ Before LOKEN, MURPHY, and COLLOTON, Circuit Judges. ____________ COLLOTON, Circuit Judge. Caren Lopez-Coronado de Lopez, a citizen and native of Guatemala, petitions for review of an order of the Board of Immigration Appeals. She proceeds on behalf of herself and her minor son Jhostin as a derivative applicant for asylum. The Board denied Lopez’s applications for asylum, withholding of removal, and relief under the Convention Against Torture. We deny the petition for review. I. Lopez entered the United States in June 2015, and applied for asylum, withholding of removal, and relief under the Convention Against Torture on behalf of herself and her son. Lopez contends that her husband and a male neighbor have persecuted her on account of her membership in a particular social group (i.e., “Guatemalan women”), and will persecute her again if she is returned to Guatemala. Although neither the husband nor the neighbor is a state actor, she asserts that the Guatemalan government is unwilling or unable to control these persecutors. See Menjivar v. Gonzales, 416 F.3d 918, 921 (8th Cir. 2005). At a hearing before an immigration judge, Lopez testified concerning two incidents involving her husband Osmar. She explained that during an argument at her home in Guatemala in October 2014, Osmar hit her twice on her legs with a cell phone cord with enough force to leave temporary marks. In November 2014, Osmar hit Lopez three times on her legs with a belt after dragging her into the middle of a street. Lopez reported no violence before 2014, but Jhostin testified that he saw Osmar hit Lopez between five and ten times over the course of their fourteen-year marriage. Osmar and Lopez legally separated in January 2015. Osmar sent insulting text messages to Lopez after the separation, but the messages ceased when she changed her telephone phone number in February 2015. Osmar also complied with a judge’s direction that he should not enter Lopez’s house after their separation. Lopez also testified about incidents involving a male neighbor named Hugo Velasquez. Lopez stated that after she separated from Osmar, Velasquez harassed and threatened her. Velasquez sought a romantic relationship with Lopez, but she rejected his advances because he belonged to violent groups and sold drugs. Velasquez persisted and came to Lopez’s house several times in June 2015. Lopez or her family called the police twice about Velasquez breaking windows at her home; -2- the police came on the second occasion, and Velasquez fled. Lopez testified that she thought Velasquez currently is in prison for unrelated criminal activity. The immigration judge believed the testimony of Lopez and Jhostin, but rejected the applications for asylum and withholding of removal. The Board affirmed, concluding that neither ...

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