Border Patrol Fatally Shoots Suspect Beating Agent With Club During Pursuit

Border Patrol Fatally Shoots Suspect Beating Agent With Club During Pursuit
U.S. Border Patrol

A male suspect was fatally shot by Border Patrol as he beat an agent with a wooden club during a dangerous chase in New Mexico last week, authorities say.

The harrowing incident unfolded just after 8:30 p.m. on April 2 near Las Cruces.

The driver of an SUV failed to stop at a checkpoint on I-10, triggering a low-speed pursuit on the highway, Customs and Border Protection (CBP) revealed in a press release.

The suspect exited the interstate and proceeded onto a county road with multiple agents tailing him.

When the driver stopped briefly near an entrance to a ranch, agents unsuccessfully tried to apprehend him, but he ignored orders and continued onward before hitting an “immobilization device” and eventually exiting the SUV.

Three Border Patrol agents wearing activated body cameras confronted the suspect, who was brandishing a wood club.

CBP explained what transpired as follows:

The driver was approached by several agents at gunpoint approximately 15-20 seconds after he began walking north on C003. The driver then swung the club three times in close proximity to one of the agents, who holstered his weapon and moved backwards to create distance. The driver once again began to walk away from the agents who repeatedly instructed him to stop and to drop the club. The driver once again swung the club three times at an approaching agent approximately six seconds later. An agent attempted to deploy an electronic control weapon twice over the next minute after instructing the driver to stop and drop the club. The driver appeared to prevent the taser from successfully deploying on both occasions by blocking the prongs with a shirt he was holding.

The driver continued to walk away from the agents, who continued to follow and order him to stop and drop the club, over the next three minutes. As the driver continued to walk along a fence line parallel to C003, another agent arrived in a marked unit and approached the driver with his extended baton in hand. This agent ordered the driver to stop and put the wooden club down. The driver swung his club as the agent approached, making contact with the agent’s baton, and swung his club a second time but did not strike the agent as the agent fell backward. The driver continued advancing toward the agent, who was now on the ground, swung the wooden club a third time and struck the agent. The driver struck the agent a second time as he stood over him and was preparing to do so again when three other agents fired their service weapons, striking the driver. The agents fired approximately 16 rounds.

The suspect fell to the ground where he was disarmed and given immediate medical attention, but showed no signs of life.

Local authorities and EMS personnel arrived on the scene, where the suspect was pronounced deceased.

An investigation is ongoing.

Attacks on border agents are on the rise, with more than 180 assaults recorded between October 1 and the end of February, according to CBP data reviewed by NewsNation.

In November, a CBP Marine Interdiction agent was killed during a shootout with drug runners near Puerto Rico.

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