NORWALK, Conn. (CBSNewYork) – A Connecticut woman and single mother of four who’s facing deportation for entering the United States illegally more than 20 years ago is defying her deportation orders.

Nury Chavarria, 43, was supposed to board a plane back to Guatemala by 5 p.m. Thursday. Instead, she sought refuge at a local church. 

She fled violence and despair in Guatemala in 1993 and was denied asylum in the U.S., WCBS 880’s Sean Adams reported.

Sen. Richard Blumenthal, (D-Conn.) said he believes that was a mistake.

“Her mother and father were granted asylum in New York. The policy here has no rational basis in fact,” he said.

Chavarria was ordered to leave the country last month after an annual check-in with immigration officials. Support from advocates, lawyers and Connecticut senators wasn’t enough to reverse their ruling.

Her four children – all US citizens – will stay behind.

“I’m scared about what’s going to happen to my mom, to my brothers and sister, all my pets,” her youngest child, 9-year-old Hayley, said.

“She’s not a criminal. She has a positive attitude about everything,” she later added. “I want her to stay here, because I love her so much.”

Chavarria has no criminal record. She’s been a housekeeper for 15 years, Adams reported.

“Just don’t separate families. It’s just not right,” Hayley pleaded.

Her oldest child is 21 years old and suffers from cerebral palsy.

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