Judicial Watch • Parts of Mexican Border “Too Dangerous” To Patrol

Parts of Mexican Border “Too Dangerous” To Patrol

Parts of Mexican Border “Too Dangerous” To Patrol

AUGUST 17, 2010

 

Federal agents guarding the U.S.-Mexico border have been ordered to stay away from the most crime-infested stretches because they’re “too dangerous” and patrolling them could result in an “international incident” of cross border shooting.

This unbelievable development was made public this week by a veteran law enforcement official in an Arizona county located along the Mexican border. In a video taped interview with a conservative newspaper, Cochise County Sheriff Larry Dever reveals firsthand accounts from U.S. Border Patrol supervisors stationed in his southeastern Arizona county.

Middle and upper management won’t allow agents to work in certain violent portions of the border because it’s too dangerous, the four-term elected sheriff says. They also want to avoid triggering an “international incident” if shooting breaks out across the border, according to Dever’s account of the Border Patrol mandate.

Throughout his three-decade law enforcement career, Dever has been on the frontlines of the increasing violence that has destroyed communities like Cochise County, which shares an 83.5-mile border with Mexico. The area is part of the Border Patrol’s Tucson sector, which accounts for nearly half of all seized marijuana and half of all illegal immigrants apprehended entering the U.S.

The crisis has become so dire that Dever created a special unit in his department dedicated to combating the increasing criminal activity related to illegal immigration and Mexican drug cartels. Officers will patrol smuggling routes along the border and target criminal enterprises that have infested the community in the last few years.

The situation along the border has become dire, the sheriff says, and his community continues to suffer in the midst of federal inaction. Congress is well aware of the situation and in fact has heard from Dever on several occasions. Just last spring the sheriff told federal lawmakers that in the 12 years he’s testified before various congressional committees, border crime has steadily increased and will only worsen.

Violence related to drug and human smuggling has risen sharply in the last decade, the sheriff said in testimony before the Senate Committee on Homeland Security. Local law enforcement agencies are severely undermanned to handle the crisis and about 37% of local criminal justice system assets have been diverted to matters relating to illegal immigration.

 

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