“Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano said [in a letter to Senator Charles Grassley] that Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry was armed with a handgun and a rifle during the December gun battle with border bandits that cost him his life,” the Washington Times reports, “countering lingering questions about his death.” Countering, but not answering. Agent Terry and his fellow agents may have been armed when they encountered a Mexican “rip crew” in the Arizona desert, BUT . . .
An FBI affidavit filed in the investigation says that the four-person team encountered a group of illegal immigrants carrying rifles on the night of Dec. 14.
The agents ordered the illegal immigrants to drop their weapons and when the immigrants refused, two agents fired bean bag rounds at them. At least one of the illegal immigrants then fired, and then two agents fired back, one with his rifle and the other with his pistol.
If the Agents saw that the rip crew had rifles, why in the world would they fire beanbag rounds at them? That doesn’t make any sense.
If we take Napolitano’s statement at face value—and that’s a big if—the question then becomes were the agents under any kind of pressure not to use their handguns and rifles? Pressure stemming from Customs and Border Protection policy, created at the top levels by, say, Secretary Napolitano? The Secretary’s letter clearly—well, not so clearly—states “It wazzunt me.”
“The decision on whether to use deadly force rests with the officers and agents in the field. CBP law enforcement personnel have never been ordered — now or in the past — to use less-lethal devices before using deadly force,” she said in her letter. “Our officers and agents are empowered to determine the appropriate level of force in defense of themselves, their fellow officers and agents, or innocent third parties.”
Ordered? What about instructed? I’d like to hear from a CPB insider EXACTLY how they were/are trained to respond to hostiles, wouldn’t you?