Third migrant dies in Border Patrol custody since December

Migrants detained by U.S. border authorities wait to be processed at the U.S. Border Patrol Central Processing Center in McAllen, Texas, on Sunday. Photo by U.S. Border Patrol

Feb. 19 (UPI) — A 45-year-old Mexican man died in Border Patrol custody, U.S. Customs and Border Protection said, becoming the third person since December to die under the agency’s care.

Customs and Border Protection said Monday the man entered the United States on Feb. 2 near the Roma Port of Entry in Texas and requested medical attention.

The next day, following a welfare check, he again requested medical attention and was transferred to McAllen Medical Center where he was diagnosed with cirrhosis of the liver and congestive heart failure.

He stayed at the facility until he died Monday morning.

“This loss of life is tragic,” CBP Assistant Commissioner for Public Affairs Andrew Meehan said in a statement. “Our condolences go out to the family and loved ones. CBP remains committed to ensuring the safe and humane treatment of those within the care of our custody.”

The cause of death is unknown, CBP said, and a review of the incident has been initiated by the agency’s Office of Professional Responsibility. The Department of Homeland Security Office of the Inspector General has also been informed.

The identity of the deceased has not been released.

The man’s death is the third to occur in CBP custody after Jakelin Caal Maquin, 7, died in the hospital within 48 hours after she was taken into Border Control’s care in early December and Felipe Gomez Alonzo, 8, who died in U.S. custody on Christmas Eve.


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