Border Patrol agents have increasingly come under attack in recent weeks in Texas and California, officials said Tuesday, including one incident where an agent was fired upon 20 times as criminal gangs continue to smuggle people and drugs into the United States.
The brazen attacks have taken place along the U.S.-Mexico border, a U.S. Customs and Border Protection statement said. In each case, the agents took cover and were not harmed.
The agency did not release any figures detailing how many incidents have occurred or say whether they are related to an influx of migrants at the border.
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Fox News has reached out to CBP officials and the National Border Patrol Council, the union that represents border agents.
“We take these threats and acts of violence seriously and will do everything we can to identify and bring those to justice who have sought to harm the men and women of the Border Patrol,” Border Patrol Chief Raul Ortiz said in a statement.
On Aug. 9, agents were shot at while taking a group of migrants into custody just south of San Diego. Residents near the area reported seeing several people from the Mexican side of the border flee in a truck and motorcycle.
Three days before, an agent was on patrol near El Paso, Texas when shots rang out. The agent took cover and was not injured. Surveillance cameras captured two people with high-caliber rifles across the Rio Grande in Mexico.
The shooters fled and the agent was uninjured.
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Another agent working a checkpoint near El Paso was hit and dragged by a car whose driver was allegedly trying to evade arrest last week. The driver was arrested and turned over to the FBI and the agent was doing well, officials said.
Customs and Border Protection officials are working with the federal government and Mexican law enforcement in response to the recent incidents.
Since October 2020, the start of the 2021 fiscal year, there have been 388 assault incidents on CBP agents as of Aug. 5, according to figures recently released by the agency. There were 415 incidents for the 2020 fiscal year, the data show.
The majority of the types of assault were physical, followed by the use of a rock or other object. Ony four involved a firearm since October.
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