In a recent Fox News interview, Texas rancher Whit Jones told Fox and Friends that he and his neighbors have found bodies of migrants on their properties.
Jones resides in Hebbronville, TX, and his properties are located north of the Rio Grande River. The Rio Grande begins in south-central Colorado, flows to the Gulf of Mexico, and serves as part of the natural border between Texas and Mexico. Jones explained how there are actually two borders for migrants to enter the United States. One of them is located on the Rio Grande River, but the second is located about fifty miles north. Once migrants cross the Rio Grande, they make another journey to this next entrypoint, described as an “interior border.”
Jones allegedly finds two to three bodies per year on his property, while a neighbor of his has been finding close to ten a year for the last ten years. The bodies Jones and his neighbor find are of men, aged between twenty and forty years, who would not qualify for asylum. Jones and his neighbor have found “hardly any children or women because of everything that’s going on on the river.” Children and women can claim asylum at the southern border and are being bused to border facilities. The bodies of single males appearing on his and his neighbors’ properties, Jones said, causes a “sense of fear that exists down here all the time.”
The United States has recently seen a surge in border crossings. According to Reuters, the homeland security secretary said that “the United States is facing the biggest surge of migrants at its southwestern border in 20 years.” U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents conducted 100,441 apprehensions of migrants at the southern border in February 2021, the highest monthly total since the border crisis of 2019. Of the surge in migrants entering the country, many are children. Nearly 4,300 unaccompanied children were being held by Border Patrol officials. By law, these children must be transferred out of CBP facilities to shelters run by the Department of Health and Human Services within seventy-two hours.
Congressional Republicans have blamed President Biden’s border policies for the influx of border crossings. “It didn’t have to happen. This crisis is created by the presidential policies of this new administration,” House of Representatives Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy said at a border facility in El Paso, TX. When asked at a press conference whether he found it acceptable that a CBP facility in Donna, TX is at “1,556% capacity” and that children are sleeping on floors packed into pods, President Biden said, “We’re going to be moving a thousand of those kids out quickly… that is totally unacceptable.”
Consequently, Jones is proposing a state law to address the “terrible situation.” House Bill 687 “helps penalize smugglers and provides protection for immigrants” and strengthens the penalty on trespassing. Jones hopes that the new state law would keep both the communities near the border, and migrant families, safe and allow law enforcement to do their jobs.
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ARTICLE: EVA SALGADO
FBA US NEWS EDITOR: CARSON WOLF
PHOTO CREDITS: THE MEDIUM