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AP: Enforcing Law Drives Up BP Suicides

From an ever so concerned Associated Press:

AP IMPACT: Border Patrol sees spike in suicides

August 16, 2010

FORT HANCOCK, Texas — After a bad day on the job as a Border Patrol agent, Eddie DeLaCruz went home and began discussing with his wife how to celebrate her upcoming birthday. Then he casually pressed his government-issued handgun under his chin and pulled the trigger…

A month later, one of DeLaCruz’s colleagues at the Fort Hancock border post put a bullet through his head, too.

Suicides including these have set off alarm bells throughout the agency responsible for policing the nation’s borders. After nearly four years without a single suicide in their ranks, border agents are killing themselves in greater numbers. Records obtained by The Associated Press show that at least 15 agents have taken their own lives since February 2008 — the largest spike in suicides the agency has seen in at least 20 years.

It’s unclear exactly why the men ended their lives. Few of them left notes. And the Border Patrol seems somewhat at odds with itself over the issue.

Federal officials insist the deaths have nothing to do with the agency, which has doubled in size since 2004, or the increasingly volatile U.S.-Mexico border

Obviously, at least according to the implications from the AP, we are doing something drastically wrong on our southern border, and we need to stop immediately.

The agency declined to provide details of the suicides and would only confirm the number of deaths since 2008. But the AP uncovered the names, locations and dates of the suicides by reviewing public records, including those obtained from medical examiners through the Freedom of Information Act, and speaking with federal officials who spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to talk about this issue….

What an odd thing for the AP to request an FOIA about, just out of the blue. It’s almost as if they set out to prove something.

All but two of the recent deaths involved agents stationed in Texas, California or Arizona.

In interviews with the AP, Border Patrol officials and families of the dead agents pointed to both professional and personal reasons.

The job, which starts at about $37,000 a year, has changed dramatically since the hiring surge began. Two years ago, an agent at a busy border station might have processed 150 illegal crossers a day.

But stepped-up border security — including 600 miles of fence and an even larger "virtual" fence that is monitored online — has reduced the number of illegal crossings, as has the economic hardship of the recession.

The result is a job that went from thrilling to downright boring. Agents often spent 12-hour shifts sitting alone in Jeeps and pickups keeping watch for illegal immigrants

So the Associated Press is claiming that Border Patrol agents are killing themselves because they don’t have enough illegal aliens to deal with?

Other Border Patrol agents defend the job as anything but boring. Thane Gallagher, a 13-year veteran of the agency stationed in San Diego, said Monday that the pressures of meticulously documenting and thoroughly questioning every captured immigrant have mounted since the Sept. 11 attacks

So if it isn’t the boredom of not having enough illegals to process, it is the pressure of having too many to handle.

The potential for danger is constant, especially in places where the border has been wracked by a bloody drug war in Mexico.

Agents face hostility from many of the people they encounter in the desert…

Mark Monsivais, whose daughter, Julia, committed suicide in July 2009… said people hurled chunks of concrete at the 24-year-old agent during her three years in Yuma, Ariz.

Other times, he said, his daughter complained of lagging backup patrolling a dangerous and barren stretch known as "Devil’s Corridor." She worried about running into drug traffickers but more often stumbled on dehydrated migrants collapsed in the sand, their legs twitching.

"It’s transparent to us, the people that are here, that the job is a definite factor. They’re under an enormous amount of stress," Monsivais said.

"If they do something wrong," he added, "it’s an international incident."

So it is much too stressful, much too dangerous and much too risky to try to enforce the law.

"The agency does run these agents to the fullest," DeLaCruz said. "’Protect, protect’ as if they’re robots and they’re not. They’re human beings."

So the Border Patrol is overworked. Even though they have doubled the number of BP agents and the rate of illegals crossing into the US has dropped and they are bored.

All in all, it’s clear that we should just give up trying to keep illegal aliens out of the country.

If this article, doesn’t show that the Associated Press is willing to twist any and all news to further their agenda, we don’t know what does.

By the way, note that the AP neglects to mention the demonization of the Border Patrol by many on the left and in our media as a possible factor.

This article was posted by Steve on Tuesday, August 17th, 2010. Comments are currently closed.

10 Responses to “AP: Enforcing Law Drives Up BP Suicides”

  1. NoNeoCommies says:

    If enforcing laws affects law enforcement badly, I suggest writing fewer speeding tickets unless the driver presents a clear danger.

  2. Liberals Demise says:

    “It’s transparent to us, the people that are here, that the job is a definite factor. They’re under an enormous amount of stress,” Monsivais said.
    “If they do something wrong,” he added, “it’s an international incident.” …

    Just the very fact that criminals from below the border bring their illegal activities here (including human trafficking), is by definition an “International Incident.”

    We are at war and need to start enforcing our territorial borders to the Nth with whatever means to do so.

    Suicides happen in every walk of life……….for whatever reason…..PERIOD!!

  3. BannedbytheTaliban says:

    I think a more accurate headline would read:

    Liberal President makes Law Enforcement Want to Commit Suicide.
    Obama’s Failures Push Border Patrol Agents Over the Edge.
    or more bluntly:
    Obama Responsible for Border Patrol Suicides.

    • jobeth says:


      “It’s unclear exactly why the men ended their lives.”

      No it’s not.

      Frustration at being handed such an impossible job with no support from the top, that puts them and their entire family at risk of attack by murderous terrorists just might color their ability to live a normal life.

      It’s easy to imagine the possible reasons behind these suicides.

      Pressures on work life and family life. Desires to “get out of the way” to keep their family safe from the thret of these Mexican thugs. The details could be numerous.

      Hopelessness while in a lose lose situation could cause all kind of negative thought processes.

      But Obalmy can’t be disturbed for such problems of the peons. He is much too busy helping out his muslim buds and trying to catch up on his rest by vacationing and golf and making token touches of the gulf waters. Now THAT is danger!

      Stress like he deals with is so much more important than the silly little stuff of those Border Peons.

      My heart goes out to these people.

      When they had to go from SUVs to fully tricked out armored military vehicles just to cruise the border…you might get the hint that they might be a target!

    • Right of the People says:

      Morale is hitting an all time low. One of the main reasons for agents frustrations is our spineless leader, Ms. Napolitano is making the job just about impossible to do right. And when we do arrest someone the judges keep letting them walk. It is so frustrating to say the least.

      The men and women we have now have the capabilities to do the job correctly if they would be left to do it and get some support from the legal system to make a difference. What is the sense of arresting someone if they are going to be released on their own recognizance never to return for trial? We could slam the borders shut if we had some backing by the administration but we all know that’s never going to happen.

      If were up to the boy pretending to be president he would do away with the Border Patrol, hell probably DHS entirely except of course for HIS secret service (got to have his bodyguards, one of the peasants might do him harm) if he could.

  4. Rusty Shackleford says:

    “If they do something wrong,” he added, “it’s an international incident.” …

    Yes, unlike when mexican thugs attack or kill US home and landowners. That’s just “people seeking a better life”.

    • jobeth says:

      They don’t even have to do something wrong…If they do something right the little “good boy”s family will cry foul.

      I mean he was just watching from the Mexican side…an innocent bystander….oops…that’s not want the video shows.

      However a mere little pebble shouldn’t be reason to shoot him… oops! That dang video again. Pebble…aka…3 lb rock aimed at the BP mans head.

  5. proreason says:

    The solution to this crisis is obvious, isn’t it?

    The border agents need hand held computers with unlimitted access to porn sites, just like all of the other gubamint agencies have.

  6. Mithrandir says:

    This is the GREAT DEPRESSION!

    My and the economy have been depressed ever since we knew Obama would be our president!

  7. TwilightZoned says:

    This story is nauseating and disturbing on so many levels. The nation’s priorities are completely screwed up.

    My heart goes out to these families who have been effected by the loss of a husband/wife, father/mother, son/daughter, brother/sister, uncle/aunt. Speaking from personal experience.

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