By Steve Neavling
Border Patrol Chief Carla Provost responded with repulsion when a news agency discovered a secret Facebook group filled with racist, demeaning and sexist content.
“These posts are completely inappropriate and contrary to the honor and integrity I see — and expect — from our agents day in and day out,” Provost said in a statement after Intercept revealed the group’s vulgar messages. “Any employees found to have violated our standards of conduct will be held accountable.”
Turns out, Provost posted on the Facebook group’s page, known as “I’m 10-15,” two months after she was appointed to lead the agency. The group is for current and former border agents.
While her comments were harmless, her posts show she knew about the group before Intercept wrote about it.
The Facebook group included offensive content and demeaning posts that targeted undocumented immigrants and U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. One of the posts was an illustration of President Trump pushing the congresswoman’s head toward his crotch. In another post, a member encouraged agents to toss a “burrito at these bitches,” referring to members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus who were visiting detention centers.
In one post, commenters questioned the authenticity of a now-viral photo of a drowned man and his younger daughter.
When ProPublica approached CBP about the Facebook group, Provost pledged to launch an investigation.
Last week, Rep. Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee, sent a letter asking Homeland Security’s office to investigate whether Provost or any other leaders previously knew about the group.
Thompson responded to Intercept after it revealed Provost posted on the page.
“This is why I have requested a full investigation into this matter,” Thompson said in a statement. “We need to know who in CBP leadership knew about these deplorable groups, when did they find out, and what action they took, if anything.”