El Centro Sector Border Patrol agents found a four-year-old girl abandoned by smugglers near Mt. Signal and the international border Sunday morning.
At approximately 6:20 a.m., Border Patrol agents from the El Centro station observed individuals illegally cross into the U.S. near Mt. Signal. When agents responded to the area, one subject was seen returning to Mexico, then enter a vehicle that quickly left the area. Agents also observed a small child standing alone in the same area on a patrol road on the U.S. side.
Agents approached and ensured the child was in good health, and not in need of medical attention. Agents found a birth certificate and information about the location of the girl’s parents in her possession. The child was transported to the El Centro station and provided with food. After interviewing the child, agents verified through documents found in her possession that she was a citizen of Guatemala.
“Who in their right mind abandons a four-year-old little girl in the middle of a vast desert,” stated Assistant Chief Patrol Agent David S. Kim. “It sickens me to think that someone would leave a child that young to fend for herself.”
The U.S. Border Patrol constantly reinforces the message that parents who illegally try to smuggle their children into the U.S. should be aware that they are putting the lives of their children in the hands of criminals.
The child was turned over to Health and Human Services to await her immigration status disposition.
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.