U.S. Southwestern Border Apprehensions Drop Slightly amid Coronavirus

U.S. Border Patrol agents process a group of illegal aliens who crossed the border illegally from Mexico near Sasabe, Arizona on March 22. (Photo: U.S. Border Patrol/Jerry Glaser)
Photo: U.S. Border Patrol/Jerry Glaser

The apprehension of migrants who illegally cross the southwest border with Mexico by Border Patrol agents decreased slightly in March. The March apprehensions exceed those in January.

Despite the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic, the number of migrants apprehended after they illegally crossed the U.S. southwest border decreased only by 121, according to the U.S. Customs and Border Protection Southwest Border Migration Report released on Thursday. The 29,953 apprehensions in March actually increased compared to January’s 29,201.

Family Unit Alien and Unaccompanied Alien Children apprehensions fell in March, but the apprehension of single adults hit its highest mark this fiscal year (23,637).

In the Rio Grande Valley Sector (the nation’s busiest), the total number of migrants increased from February (6,701) to March (7,002). The sector led the other eight southwest Border Patrol sectors in Single Adult and Unaccompanied Alien Children apprehension while the San Diego Sector had the most Family Unit Aliens, the report states.

Border Patrol Agent Chris Cabrera, in his role as a spokesman for the National Border Patrol Council (NBPC) and Local 3307 in the Rio Grande Valley Sector, expressed concern about current trends.

Agent Cabrera said illegal immigrants have changed their behavior since new COVID-19 protection protocols were put in place. Those protocols call for nearly all apprehended to be put back across the border into Mexico regardless of age, nationality, or citizenship.

“We used to see them cross the border and surrender to the first agent they encountered,” the veteran Border Patrol agent said. “Now they are nearly all running away to try and escape. This means we have to chase them and have more physical contact than if they just surrendered.”

The total number of migrants apprehended in March 2020 is down significantly from one year ago. This March, agents apprehended 29,953 migrants who illegally crossed the border from Mexico. That is down from 92,833 in March 2019 — a decrease of nearly 68 percent.

Bob Price serves as associate editor and senior news contributor for the Breitbart Texas-Border team. He is an original member of the Breitbart Texas team. Price is a regular panelist on Fox 26 Houston’s What’s Your Point? Sunday-morning talk show. Follow him on Twitter @BobPriceBBTX and Facebook.

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