As the death toll climbed to 9 late Sunday afternoon, debate over the statewide impact of human trafficking ignited across portions of East Texas.

Javier, a legal immigrant and appliance repairman in Tyler, said that immigration opponents should just put themselves in the shoes of those who are just trying to make the lives of their family better.

"We are not criminals. We come here just to work and to give our back. Work hard. To support this country," Javier said.

Watching his neighbors walk the streets each morning looking for day labor jobs, Javier said that "immigrants aren't trying to take your opportunity. You can do it."