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Smuggler Gun Violence Against California Border Patrol Escalates at US-Mexico Border

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Smuggler Gun Violence Against California Border Patrol Escalates at US-Mexico Border

A U.S. Border Patrol agent monitors from a vehicle a section of the U.S.-Mexico border wall near Otay Mesa between San Diego and Tijuana in San Diego County, Calif., on Jan. 12, 2022. (Patrick T. Fallon/AFP via Getty Images)

City News Service

City News Service

8/25/2023

Updated: 8/25/2023

OTAY MESA, Calif.—U.S. Border Patrol agents were fired upon recently while trying to apprehend a group of suspected migrants illegally entering the United States, officials said on Aug. 25.
“Smuggling organizations are becoming desperate and escalating their level of violence because of the work being performed by U.S. Border Patrol agents,” San Diego Sector Chief Patrol Agent Patricia McGurk-Daniel said. “Our agents are preventing smugglers from conducting their illicit business and this is their very dangerous response. This callous display clearly shows that smugglers do not care about the safety of migrants or law enforcement.”
On Aug. 18, a Border Patrol Agent encountered a group of suspected migrants in the Otay Mountain Wilderness area, the chief patrol agent said. While attempting to apprehend the group a person fired multiple shots in the direction of the agent.
“Additional agents responding to the area heard gunshots and observed muzzle flashes coming from the vicinity of the group,” Mr. McGurk-Daniel said. “Moments later, agents heard a second volley of shots directed at them. The agents took cover as the group and the assailant returned to Mexico.”
No agents were injured.
The San Diego Sector Border Patrol Tactical Unit was deployed to secure the area and to clear it of any suspects or weapons. However, no guns were found.
On Aug. 22, U.S. National Guard personnel operating a mobile scope spotted an armed person climbing the international border fence in the Otay Mountain Wilderness area. A day later, two armed subjects were observed in the same area, official said.
Agents responded and searched the areas with no results. Border Patrol San Diego Sector was coordinating with foreign law enforcement agencies and the government of Mexico “to address these incidents,” officials said.
“These incidents and individuals pose a significant danger to agents patrolling the area as well as migrants attempting to illegally enter,” said Mr. McGurk-Daniel. “The safety of our agents, and the safety of migrants remains paramount. We remain vigilant in the face of escalating threats and danger, and we will work to identify and prosecute the responsible parties.”
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