Border Patrol Station Closings Cause Alarm
The White House is preparing to have nine border patrol stations shuttered in four states. The closures have caused sharp criticism from law enforcement in the area, border patrol agents and member of Congress. Critics warn the closings will hurt the efforts to stop human and drug traffickers in the often traveled corridors on the northern side of the U.S.-Mexico border. The closures are scattered amongst four states and cover a large area where illegal immigration activity takes place.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection explained that its closures were due to reassigning agents to other high priority locations at the border. Even though the majority of the closings are not close to the border, they are in locations that have a great deal of activity including drug smuggling and human trafficking.
Other communities are worried who will make arrests of illegal immigration once border patrol agents are no longer stationed in their towns. On region in the Panhandle of Texas only has two agents that cover 26 counties. One Sheriff in Potter County said that even though his county is not near the border, it is in an active corridor for illegal immigrants and how is he going to hold a car full of illegal immigrants while he waits for border patrol agents to arrive.
Lawmakers are starting to complain about the closures. Three Texas lawmakers whose districts are in the area of closures have asked the head of Border Patrol to reconsider his decision to close them. They said that 638 apprehensions of undocumented immigrants have taken place in just the first six months of this year.