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Arizona Alien Smuggling Incident Results in Deaths

Release Date
Fri, 06/05/2020

TUCSON, Ariz. – On the evening of June 2, 2020, Border Patrol Agents assigned to the Douglas Station initiated a stop of a vehicle traveling on State Route 80, north of Douglas, AZ. The vehicle, driven by a United States Citizen, was occupied by four individuals determined to be undocumented aliens. Border Patrol Agents handling the traffic stop observed a second vehicle also suspected of being involved in human smuggling activity.

Agents attempted to make an immigration stop of the second vehicle, however, the driver failed to yield to their lights and sirens. A CBP Air and Marine Operations (AMO) aircraft, already on patrol in the area, responded to assist ground agents with the pursuit. During the pursuit, CBP personnel deployed a controlled tire deflation device. The pursuit ended when the suspect vehicle lost control and rolled over.

Emergency medical personnel, including a Life Flight air ambulance, responded to the scene. A total of five occupants were in the vehicle. One occupant died on the scene, two were transported to a Tucson area hospital by Life Flight and remain in critical condition, and one was treated and released to Border Patrol custody. The suspected driver, determined to be a United States Citizen, was critically injured and later died at a local hospital. The remaining four occupants were determined to be undocumented aliens.

The suspected smuggling incident is under investigation by Immigration and Customs Enforcement and is also under review by CBP’s Office of Professional Responsibility.

CBP has rescued countless individuals from criminal smugglers. We urge migrants to think twice before putting their lives in the hands of smugglers.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection, which includes U.S. Border Patrol, Office of Field Operations, and Air and Marine Operations, is a part of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.


Last Modified: Jun 14, 2023