SUNLAND PARK, N.M. –The El Paso Branch of Air and Marine Operations (AMO) assisted in the apprehension of an undocumented immigrant who allegedly assaulted a Border Patrol agent near Mt. Cristo Rey, in New Mexico.
The incident began when Border Patrol agents began tracking a group of suspected illegal immigrants near Mt. Cristo Rey. The agents eventually requested air assistance from AMO who arrived via helicopter and were able to provide assistance in helping locate subjects being sought based on heat signatures taken from the aircraft’s “forward looking infrared camera” (FLIR).
One member of the group was attempting to hide in desert brush when he broke away and ran toward a ground agent. The agent attempted to take the man into custody when the subject began to resist violently. A struggle ensued and both men eventually hurtled over a six-foot ledge. The agent hit his head on a rock and was temporarily disabled, while the subject continued to flee.
The AMO helicopter unit continued to spotlight the individual and led other Border Patrol agents to his whereabouts. The subject then ran at a second agent who deployed his government issued electronic control device. The subject reacted to the deployment and was taken into custody without further incident. The remaining members of the illegal immigrant group were also rounded up by agents and members of the El Paso Sector Horse Patrol Unit.
The injured agent was evaluated/treated at the scene for the contusions to his head and was transported by air ambulance to Las Palmas Medical Center. He was subsequently cleared and released by the hospital. The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) was notified and took custody of the subject and are tentatively planning to prosecute him for “Assault of a Federal Officer”. The subject will also be processed as an Expedited Removal and removed after his prosecution by the FBI.
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.