TUCSON, Ariz. – A Tucson Sector Border Patrol agent narrowly escaped injury after a U.S citizen made an alleged attempt to run him over Saturday at a checkpoint in southern Arizona.
Agents working at the Federal Route 15 checkpoint south of Casa Grande, Arizona encountered a Dodge pick-up truck and referred the driver to a secondary inspection lane after a canine alerted to the vehicle. Instead, the driver ignored the instructions and accelerated directly at the agent.
The agent was able to deploy a spike strip while simultaneously evading the oncoming vehicle, successfully deflating two of the truck’s tires. Unfazed, however, the driver continued to flee.
Agents pursued the vehicle for 30 miles on Federal Route 15 until other agents deployed a second spike strip, which deflated the remaining two tires. With the truck inoperable, the driver then attempted to evade agents on foot but was immediately apprehended. A subsequent search of the truck uncovered two bales of marijuana, weighing nearly 56 pounds and worth approximately $27,800.
Agents later conducted a biometric records check that identified the driver as a U.S citizen; on parole from the Arizona Department of Corrections. The subject is now in custody and faces charges relating to the drugs, assault and ensuing pursuit.
Federal law allows agents to charge individuals by complaint, a method that allows the filing of charges for criminal activity without inferring guilt. An individual is presumed innocent unless and until competent evidence is presented to a jury that establishes guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.
"The agent showed incredible fortitude, maintaining the presence of mind to deploy spike strips in an attempt to prevent the driver from inflicting harm to others," said Tucson Sector Chief Paul Beeson. "The agent’s quick thinking and composure reinforces the importance of utilizing safe tactics and the necessity for our agents to remain vigilant at all times."
Recent statistics released by Customs and Border Protection show that Tucson Sector accounted for more than 20 percent of all assaults on agents recorded by the U.S. Border Patrol in 2015.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection is the unified border agency within the Department of Homeland Security charged with the management, control and protection of our nation's borders at and between the official ports of entry. CBP is charged with keeping terrorists and terrorist weapons out of the country while enforcing hundreds of U.S. laws.