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August 18, 09

NEWS / Border Patrol Agents Car Rammed by Smugglers Pick-Up

Yuma, Ariz. - A U.S. Border Patrol agent from the Yuma, Ariz. sector was assaulted early Saturday morning while apprehending two suspected drug smugglers carrying more than $1/2 million worth of marijuana.

The Yuma Marine Corps Air Station notified Border Patrol agents of a suspicious vehicle located near Foothills Blvd. in the desert east of Yuma. When agents arrived to investigate, they discovered a silver Chevrolet pick-up truck located in the area. Before the agents were able to make contact with the vehicle, it fled the area, heading south toward Mexico.

While driving south, several wrapped bundles of marijuana fell from the bed of the truck. The truck drove to the border road paralleling the International Boundary and came to a stop. The driver of the pick-up truck then appeared to deliberately ram the vehicle of one of the investigating agents. After the collision, agents moved in to apprehend the driver and passenger of the pick-up truck. One of the agents used pepper spray to subdue the driver, after he became combative toward the agents. The driver and passenger where then taken into custody without further incident.

A total of 29 bundles of marijuana weighing 647 pounds with an estimated street value of $517,680 were recovered from the vehicle. The drugs and vehicle’s occupants were turned over to the Drug Enforcement Administration, and the vehicle was seized by the Border Patrol. The agent assaulted by the vehicle was unharmed.

In fiscal year 2009, there have been a total of 37 incidents of assaults on agents. This number is down 39 percent from fiscal year 2008, a testament to added security provided by greater Yuma sector manpower.




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