EAGLE PASS, Texas – U.S. Border Patrol marine agents working in Eagle Pass rescued an 11-year-old girl from the Rio Grande River after receiving a distress call.
“Crossing into the United States illegally can be a dangerous affair,” remarked Acting Chief Patrol Agent Matthew J. Hudak in response to the event. “I am proud of our agents and the law enforcement partnerships which contributed to this rescue.”
On Jan. 12, at approximately 9:30 a.m., agents from the Eagle Pass Station and Eagle Pass Fire Department were dispatched to a distress call. Eagle Pass Police Department had received a concerned citizen’s report from Mexico about a possible undocumented immigrant stranded in the Rio Grande. After a thorough search, Eagle Pass marine units located a child on a small island north of the city. The agents were able to extract the girl, load her onto their patrol boat, and transport her to dry land.
The child, an 11-year-old Honduran national, had attempted to cross the previous night and was stuck on the small island for an entire day. The minor had no family members with her. As a precautionary measure, she was taken to the Fort Duncan Regional Medical Center for evaluation. The child was issued a clean bill of health and returned to the Eagle Pass South Station for processing, per CBP guidelines for unaccompanied children.
Del Rio Sector agents have seen a 66 percent increase in the amount of unaccompanied children for Fiscal Year 2016, compared to the previous year. “These children often travel great distances in order to reach the United States,” (A)CPA Hudak explained. “They can face many perils or be preyed upon during these journeys.”
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.