EL PASO, Texas -U.S. Border Patrol agents from the El Paso Sector responded to a report of a suspected smuggling incident Saturday, at 8 p.m. EDT, near mile marker 131 on Highway 9 in New Mexico. Agents encountered the grey minivan identified by the report, which failed to yield to emergency lights and sirens.
As a result, agents deployed a controlled tire deflation device on Highway 9 at mile marker 142. The vehicle swerved away from the device, rolled over and two people were ejected. Agents immediately provided emergency care, and contacted emergency medical services and the New Mexico State Police. Border Patrol emergency medical technicians and a U.S. Coast Guard medical team assigned to the Santa Teresa Station also responded.
The Dona Ana Medical Examiner pronounced the two individuals who were thrown from the vehicle to be deceased. Of the 11 people in the vehicle, EMS transported five with non-life-threatening injuries to a hospital nearby. Agents identified the driver as a 27-year-old male, U.S. citizen. The identities of the deceased will be withheld pending notification to family members. El Paso Sector also notified Homeland Security Investigations and CBP’s Office of Professional Responsibility.
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 official ports of entry. CBP is charged with securing the borders of the United States while enforcing hundreds of laws and facilitating lawful trade and travel.