Border Woes Continue in Texas

The Texas Department of Public Safety reports police forces and troops met over 165,000 suspected illegal border crossers or smugglers since March.

On Thursday, Lt. Chris Olivarez, spokesperson for the Texas DPS’s South Region, announced officers, National Guard troops, the Texas Parks and Wildlife Division arrested and referred 165,000 people to police departments for arrest in the last nine months.

The majority of the 165,000 people were captured and turned over to other agencies, including the US Border Patrol. 

Car Chases and Arrests

Surrounding Del Rio, Texas, where hundreds of Haitian migrants crossed the border in September and set up a temporary camp under the border bridge, 9,900 were charged with felony trespassing.

Since March, DPS officers pursued over 1,000 vehicles. A DPS officer sought to stop a Ford pickup trucker believed to be harboring illegal immigrants on Thanksgiving Day. The motorist did not stop, and police pursued him.

Two individuals died when the vehicle crashed. 11 others were hurt and transferred to a nearby hospital. The driver was accused of human smuggling and fleeing apprehension after being arrested by Border Patrol, then promptly deported to Mexico under Title 42 pandemic guidelines.

On Nov. 28, a DPS officer in Kinney County intercepted a U-Haul truck and found 12 smugglers in the back. The truck’s operator and front passenger were both Crips from Oklahoma.

According to Olivarez, the fact that smugglers or persons from larger places — Austin, Dallas, San Antonio, even out of state — are traveling to Del Rio is exceptional.

They travel to the Rio Grande Valley, notably Del Rio, to become human smugglers because the criminal groups advertise heavily on social media.

Narcotics Also Being Smuggled

He predicts an increase in automobile chases since these people don’t want to be caught. Their only goal is to avoid police enforcement. 

Other traffickers were captured for attempting to carry narcotics into the US from Mexico. Since March, they have seized almost 13,000 pounds of cannabis, 2,400 pounds of coke, 1,000 pounds of meth, and 157 pounds of opioids.

Following President Biden’s inauguration, Texas Republican Gov. Greg Abbott launched Operation Lone Star, a statewide campaign where DPS state troopers assist Border Patrol officers in arresting intruders.

Meanwhile, Border Patrol operatives were pulled from the ground to transfer and process those arrested. On July 27, Abbott directed Texas Military Department Maj. Gen. Tracy Norris to take fresh measures.

Abbott ordered Norris to call forward the militia to enforce the laws of the nation, as authorized by Article IV, Section 7 of the Texas Constitution.

Normally, military personnel cannot arrest suspects. Until July, state military units assisting Border Patrol, state troopers, and law enforcement agencies did not interface with migrants.

They operated cameras and patrolled the border, along with some other duties. However, the Posse Comitatus Act prohibits government troops, such as the US Army, from executing civilian law without congressional authority.

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