Border Patrol Agent Gunned Down in Texas
MCALLEN, Texas — Two men are expected to face capital murder charges for the shooting death of a U.S Border Patrol agent who was fishing with his family.
On Sunday night, off-duty agent Javier Vega was fishing with his family in secluded spot in the south eastern part of the county near the rural community of Santa Monica, just east of Lyford Texas when the shooting occurred.
Willacy County Sheriff Larry Spence told Breitbart Texas that the shooting was the result of a robbery gone wrong.
“We’ve had similar cases of robbery in the nearby county of Cameron where suspects fire off a couple of rounds into the air to scare their victims and tell them to hand over their keys, wallet and other valuables leaving them stranded,” Spence said.
In the case of Vega, the two men drove by apparently scoping out the area and then came back for the robbery firing several rounds into the air.
“This time you had a border patrol agent who was armed and he fired back at the suspects,” the sheriff said. “Sometime, we are not sure when, he was hit in the chest and his father was shot in the hip.”
The agent’s mother drove the injured men to seek medical attention but Vega died as a result of his injuries. Authorities set up a manhunt with the help of local state and federal authorities to track down the suspects.
Vega managed to shoot out the gunmen’s windshield and damaged the vehicle forcing to abandon it down the road.
The gunmen had to walk several miles to the U.S. Highway 77- Interstate 69 from where they managed to make their way to the town of Sebastian, Spence said.
“There they went to a home and asked for some water and for a phone charger,” the sheriff said. He added that after the homeowner gave them some water, the men hid in a nearby shed. “The owner saw all the traffic from law enforcement going up and down the highway and went to see what all the commotion was about.”
When law enforcement told the man about the shooting, he pointed them in the direction of the gunmen who had been hiding in the shed and surrendered when authorities arrived, Spence said.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with the agent’s family, as it is in law enforcement you rarely get time off and for something like this to happen while spending time with your family is just tragic,” the sheriff said.
The two men are expected to face the charge of capital murder which in Texas is punishable by life sentence in prison or by the death penalty.
*This story has been updated with new information since being published.
Follow Ildefonso Ortiz on Twitter @ildefonsoortiz.