Border patrol deaths raise questions

Local News

WASHINGTON, DC – Last year, 3 children died in US Customs and Border Protections Custody, prompting questions about medical care in the agency’s southwest border facilities.

NewsChannel 34’s Anna Wiernicki says the House Homeland Security Committee is taking a look at what CBP needs to do to make sure no more children die in US custody.

“A 7 year-old girl named Jacquelyn and an 8 year-old boy named Felipe,” says US Congressman Bennie Thompson.

Mississippi Democratic Congressman Bennie Thompson read the names of the five children who died in border patrol’s custody since 2018.

“There is something seriously wrong with this picture,” says Thompson.

Dr. Roger Mitchell Jr. is Chief Medical Examiner in Washington, DC.

He says he examined the autopsy reports and each death could have been prevented.

“There are many missed opportunities to provide lifesaving care to this child,” says Mitchell.

Mitchell blames overcrowding and a lack of personnel at the detention facilities.

Thompson says last year, congress approved $112 million dollars in emergency funding to help the border patrol care for the migrants, but he says the agency used that money elsewhere.

“To instead by jet skis, dirt bikes and even dog food,” says Thompson.

Thompson says Border Patrol needs to be held accountable, but Alabama Republican Mike Rogers defended the agency.

“Record numbers of families and children crossed our border last year. Groups of hundreds to thousands of migrants came across it at once,” says Rogers.

Rogers says CBP has been overwhelmed.

“Until Congress takes action to address the root cause of last year’s crisis, it is only a matter of time before another one occurs,” says Rogers.

Rogers says if Congress wants to save lives, it should work with the President to secure the border.

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