Office of Air and Marine agent spots lost hunter from ASTAR
INTERNATIONAL FALLS Minn.— On September 21, Border Patrol agents from the International Falls station (INF) and Warroad station (WRM) along with an Office of Air and Marine (OAM) Air Interdiction agent out of Grand Forks, located a missing hunter in Loman, MN.
The incident began on Sunday September 20, when Agents from the International Falls station were contacted by the Koochiching County Sheriff’s Department for assistance locating a lost hunter. The hunter who was in his 70’s went grouse hunting on his ATV the evening of September 20th and did not return at sundown. At approximately 9:00 p.m., Sheriff’s deputies called the International Falls station requesting assistance for the search and any air assets that were available. Shortly thereafter the search was called off until the morning due to darkness.
Immediately the following morning, Koochiching Deputies, INF and WRM agents began the search again at sunrise. At approximately 7:00 a.m. the National Air Security Operations Center-Grand Forks launched an AS350 in support of the search. After reviewing the previous search area with friends and family it was decided that the helicopter would work a location they thought the hunter might have gone, as ATV tracks indicated previous travel. Once in the search area the AS350 now co-crewed with a local Sheriff’s Deputy quickly located the hunter and his stuck ATV. The OAM Air Interdiction agent was able to communicate to the Border Patrol Agents from International Falls station and one Koochiching Sheriff’s Deputy on the ground that the individual was located and appeared to be in good health. The AS350 then guided the search team to the hunter’s location where Border Patrol Agents were able to extricate the stuck ATV and escort the individual back to awaiting friends and family.
“This is the best outcome anyone in law enforcement could ever ask for in this situation,” said International Falls Patrol Agent in Charge Derek Mason. “One of the first things you learn as a Border Patrol agent or an Air Interdiction agent is to track, and I 100% believe that training is why we found this lost hunter.”
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.