Situation Along Southern Border Allegedly Worsening

A Central American woman and her son cross the Rio Grande. | Image by David Peinado Romero on Shutterstock

Jaeson Jones, a former Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) captain and current border reporter, alleged last week that crime is worsening along the southwest border, and the numbers from Customs and Border Protection (CBP) seem to back up that claim.

According to CBP, in 2021, Border Patrol agents reported 1.6 million unlawful migrant encounters along the southern border. That was up from 450,000 the year before. To date, CBP reports 1.2 million unlawful migrant encounters in 2022.

With Title 42 potentially ending soon, videos depicting border crossings are ramping up. A video released from Eagle Pass, Texas, shows over 150 adults and children approaching a border crossing together.

Jones said he spoke to state officials earlier this week. They told him they would work with state officials in Mexico, specifically in Nuevo León, to put up barriers on the Mexican side of the border to limit the number of people crossing in large groups.

These border crossings are inherently dangerous operations for unlawful migrants coming to the U.S. Last week, four people, including two children, died while trying to cross the rain-swollen Rio Grande.

One child was a 4-year-old from Uruguay, and the other was a 9-year-old from Nicaragua.

This happened in the same area where 22-year-old National Guardsman Bishop Evans, from Arlington, drowned while trying to save two people from the river.

Jones says these encounters are about more than just people crossing the border; he claims they have led to an increase in crime as well.

One released video shows a truck causing a crash in the roadway, only to have the alleged unlawful migrants bail out and run off in different directions. Jones claims accidents like this are happening across the country.

Another chase, Jones says, began with CBP investigating a pickup truck along the border in Frio County and ended in McMullen County, over 100 miles away. People occupied the cab and the bed of the truck, and the video seems to show the Dodge pickup truck pulling off the road and driving through gates and fences on ranches.

According to Texas Farm Bureau (TFB), this is one of many cases of unlawful migrants impacting South Texas ranchers.

“The impacts of the border crisis are many,” TFB President Russell Boening said. “Farm and ranch families are bearing the brunt of this unprecedented influx. The personal accounts on the [TFB] webpage are real.”

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