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Tag: Border Patrol

Border Patrol’s Laredo Sector Has New Interim Chief with a Leadership Background

Felix Chavez

By Steve Neavling
Ticklethewire.com

Border Patrol’s busy Laredo Sector has a new interim chief after two of its agents have been charged with murder this year.

Border Patrol Chief Carla Provost appointed Felix Chavez, a 32-year veteran of the agency, to the position, which puts him in charge of more than 85,000 square miles, from Arkansas to Texas.

Chavez, who replaces Jason D. Owens, most recently served as chief patrol agent of the Del Rio Sector

A graduate of Ashford University in Clinton, Iowa, Chavez became an agent in 1985, and his first assignment was at the Sierra Blanca Station. A decade later, Chavez rose to supervisory Border Patrol agent at the Tucson Station.

In 1997, he became the field operations supervisor at the Tucson station before promoted to patrol agent in charge of the Alamogordo station in the El Paso sector in July 2002. In 2007, Chavez was selected as the patrol agent of the Tucson Sector.

In May 2011, Chavez was promoted to the senior executive service position of deputy chief of the former operations division at Border Patrol’s headquarters in Washington D.C. In August 2013, he was appointed as the deputy chief patrol agent at the Tucson Sector.

Human Smugglers Causing Humanitarian Crisis by Dumping Migrants Across the Border

Photo via Border Patrol

By Steve Neavling
Ticklethewire.com

Human smugglers are causing a humanitarian crisis by bringing large groups of Central American migrants into America and then abandoning them, U.S. Customs and Border Protection said.

Since Aug. 20, Border Patrol agents made eight discoveries of groups of more than 100 documented immigrants, including children, walking in areas of southwest Arizona, AZCentral.com reports

The largest group was discovered on Sept. 20, when Yuma-based Border Patrol agents came across 275 adults and children, 20 of whom were taken to the hospital.

“With more family units being smuggled into these areas, agents must divert even greater resources to care and treat those harmed by the arduous journey,” Border Patrol said in a statement.

“Family units who might have previously presented themselves at ports of entry, are being shuttled by human smugglers into areas with limited infrastructure to illegally cross into Arizona,” the UCBP said in a press release issued Friday. “Multiple areas along the Yuma and Ajo corridors are being exploited by criminal organizations.”

Border Patrol Agent Accused of Killing 4 Women Far from the Only Agent in Legal Trouble

Supervisory Border Patrol Agent Juan David

By Steve Neavling
Ticklethewire.com

Accused serial killer, Border Patrol Supervisor Juan David Ortiz, is far from the only agent at the agency to be accused of serious crimes in past five years.

Border Patrol Agent Ronald Anthony Burgos-Aviles is accused of killing his 27-year-old lover and the couple’s baby. He was charged in April and has pleaded not guilty.

Between 2014-16, more than 20,000 misconduct cases, which include criminal offenses, were filed against employees of Customs and Border Protection, according to the Government Accountability Office, USA Today reports

Of those, 1,300 involved criminal conduct, ranging from drunken driving to domestic violence. An additional 1,000 cases involved mistreatment of detainees, ranging from physical violence to sexual abuse.

Only about 2% of those cases forced agents to resign, retire or be fired.

Questions Raised about Border Patrol After Agent Described As Serial Killer

Supervisory Border Patrol Agent Juan David

By Steve Neavling
Ticklethewire.com

The arrest of a Border Patrol agent accused of killing four women this month has raised an obvious question: Did the federal law enforcement agency miss red flags about a man described as a serial killer?

Eighteen members of the House of Representatives are questioning Customs and Border Protection about its hiring practices and whether it missed warning signs about Juan David Ortiz.

“Like you, our priority is to provide for the well-being and safety of the populations we serve,” the members wrote in a letter sent to CBP Commissioner Kevin McAleenan. “To do so, we must learn from any mistakes made in this case.” 

Ortiz was arrested after a sex worker’s daring escape at gunpoint in Laredo, Tex., and authorities said he has confessed to killing four women by shooting them in the head and leaving their bodies on rural Texas roadsides. 

According to the Associated Press, the former Navy veteran appeared to be living a “typical suburban life” in Laredo, raising two children with his wife. 

‘‘We’re seeking truth, and we’re seeking justice for these victims,’’ Webb County District Attorney Isidro Alaniz told the AP. ‘‘Hopefully, even though motive is not an element to the crime of murder, we will be able to try to piece together what was going on in the mind of this accused killer as to why he did it.’’

In the meantime, investigators are trying to determine whether this month’s four murders were the only ones committed by Ortiz, who joined the Border Patrol in August 2009.

Border Patrol Agent Accused of Being a Serial Killer After Woman’s Daring Escape

Supervisory Border Patrol Agent Juan David

By Steve Neavling
Ticklethewire.com

A supervisory Border Patrol agent accused of being a serial killer was tracked down after a sex worker’s daring escape at gunpoint in Laredo, Tex.

Juan David Ortiz, a 10-year veteran of the agency who worked in intelligence, confessed to four September murders, including two in a five-hour span early Saturday morning, the Washington Post reports.

“We consider this man to be a serial killer who was preying on one victim after another,” Webb County Sheriff Martin Cuellar said. 

A sex worker who suspected Ortiz had killed her friend was in a white pickup truck with the alleged killer when he pulled out a gun and grabbed her shirt. She managed to escape, and he fled.

The woman flagged down a state trooper, and after a pursuit, police found the 35-year-old hiding in a hotel parking lots at 2:30 a.m. Saturday.

Ortiz faces life in prison on four counts of murder, aggravated assault and unlawful restrain.

All of the victims are believed to be sex workers, some of whom may not have been chosen at random.

Canadian Woman Slapped Border Patrol Officer Across Face After Being Denied Entrance into U.S.

By Steve Neavling
Ticklethewire.com

A Canadian woman got her wish after slapping a Border Patrol agent across the face for denying her entrance into the U.S. to visit Niagara Falls.

Tianna Natasha McPherson, 40, insisted she was an American citizen and told the agent she wanted to be charged under U.S law.

Now she’s facing up to eight years in prison after U.S. authorities charged her with assaulting, resisting or impeding a U.S. officer.

“The defendant stated that she wanted to go before an American jude, and grabbed her baggage, and began walking towards the exit of the lobby” at the Niagara Falls International Rainbow Bridge between Ontario and New York state, Newsweek reports

Border officials refused to let her into America because of “derogatory information” during past visits into the U.S.

“What if I punch you in the face?” McPherson allegedly asked the officer.

At that point, McPherson “open-hand slapped the officer on the left side of her face,” according to the statement.

McPherson, a native of Kitchener, Ontario, is scheduled to appear for a detention hearing on Thursday.

New Orleans Sector of CBP Now Led by 22-Year Veteran Gregory Bovino

By Steve Neavling
Ticklethewire.com

Gregory Bovino, a 22-year-veteran of U.S. Customs and Border Protection, has been named the new leader of the agency’s New Orleans sector.

Bovino is tasked with heading up a sector that encompasses nearly 700 miles of coastal border in Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Arkansas, Tennessee, Kentucky and the Florida Panhandle.

The sector includes border stations in Lake Charles, Baton Rouge, New Orleans, Gulfport and Mobile.

Bovino said the key to running a successful sector is collaboration with local and state law enforcement.

“Collaboration and steady communication with our local partners and ensuring that this is ongoing is extremely important to us,” he told the Times-Picayune.

Border Patrol Agent Sentenced to Probation for Possessing Illegal Firearm, Heroin

Photo via Border Patrol

By Steve Neavling
Ticklethewire.com

A Border Patrol agent arrested last year for possessing an illegal firearm and heroin was sentenced to three years’ probation and time served.

Brandon James Herrera was arrested in April 2016 after police in Oceanside, Calif., found a short-barrel rifle and about five grams of heroin in the agent’s trunk, NBC7 reports

Police pulled over Herrera after they said his truck matched the description of a vehicle driven by a suspicious person.

Herrera pleaded guilty to unlawful possession of an assault weapon on July 23.