Rio Grande Valley Sector Border Patrol agents rescued 17 migrants after they were abandoned by human smugglers on ranches in Texas. The rescues took place in four separate incidents in two South Texas counties.
Falfurrias Station agents received a 911 call on the afternoon of June 15 from a Salvadoran national who said his brush guide abandoned him. The migrant claimed to be traveling with six other people in Brooks County, Texas. The group became lost while attempting to circumvent the Falfurrias Border Patrol checkpoint after the guide left them behind.
As temperatures rise, so do the risks. #RGV agents rescue 17 migrants abandoned by smugglers in the scorching ranch lands. 5 migrants were transported to the hospital with 2 of them showing signs of extreme dehydration, kidney failure, & COVID-19.https://t.co/XoDLu87QSk pic.twitter.com/NkvAIao025
— Chief Patrol Agent Brian Hastings (@USBPChiefRGV) June 17, 2021
Brooks County Sheriff’s Office dispatchers triangulated the caller’s cell phone and provided Border Patrol agents with an approximate location for the lost migrants, officials reported. Agents began a search and rescue operation and located the group.
The agents conducted a medical evaluation and identified multiple migrants in need of medical attention due to extreme dehydration. Four of the migrants suffering heat exhaustion had to be carried out of the brush by the Border Patrol agents. Ambulances met the agents at the road and transported five migrants to a hospital. Two of the migrants required hospitalization for their heat-related injuries.
Shortly before this incident, the Brooks County Sheriff’s Office received another Salvadoran migrant who said he was traveling with four other subjects. He claimed to be traveling with two minors — one of whom was unaccompanied.
Agents quickly located the four lost migrants and transported them to the Falfurrias Border Patrol Station for processing. The medical staff evaluated the migrants and found them to not be in need of further medical attention.
Elsewhere in the Rio Grande Valley Sector, Kingsville Station agents patrolling the Kenedy County Rest Area on U.S. Highway 77 encountered an Ecuadoran male walking along the roadway.
After transporting the man to the Javier Vega, Jr. Checkpoint for processing, the man said he left his 16-year-old son alone in the brush a day and a half earlier. He said his son had trouble walking.
Officials dispatched additional agents to the last known location where they found the boy a few hours later. A Border Patrol EMT evaluated the boy and determined he was still in good health.
On June 14, Kenedy County Sheriff’s Office dispatchers contacted Kingsville Station agents to report two more migrants who called 911 for assistance. Dispatchers were unable to triangulate the caller’s cell phone signal.
Agents used the WhatsApp communications app to contact the Ecuadoran national. The migrant supplied enough information for agents to determine his location.
Agents responded to the location and found the Ecuadoran migrant and his traveling companion. The agents determined the migrants to be in good health and transported them to the Kingsville Station for processing.