Palominas - Cochise County Sheriff deputies were called to the U.S./Mexico border Friday night after receiving a call from a Border Patrol supervisor from the Naco station saying that that citizens were holding a group of 40 UDA’s at gunpoint.
Three county sheriff’s deputies and five Border Patrol vehicles converged on two Cochise County residents sitting with their pickup truck watching a trail frequently used by UDA’s and drug dealers. No one was found to be held at gunpoint.
Sheriff Larry Dever reported that his office is “pretty sure the call came from Border Patrol. I’ll find out where this report came from...I had thought it was Border Patrol that called us. In legal terminology it’s called “false reporting... it’s a crime.”
Members of Civil Homeland defense, led by Tumbleweed publisher Chris Simcox were on a patrol in the area Friday night. The citizen patrol group was accompanied by a two- person video news crew from the Phoenix affiliate of Univision.
After a short wait on the trail the news crew and volunteers of CHD encountered two groups totaling over 30 UDA’s. The Univision crew began a 20 minute interview with the group while a CHD volunteer called the Border Patrol
station in Naco requesting that an agent come to the location to apprehend the illegal aliens.
A Border Patrol agent responded to the volunteer, a female senior citizen, implying that she was illegally detaining the group, which is against the law, and told her to let the group go and that agents were not going to respond to her call for assistance. The agent hung up on a United States citizen calling for help with national security.
A second call was made to the Naco headquarters and CHD founder Chris Simcox demanded to speak with a supervisor. Simcox told him that “the entire group is standing here being interviewed by Univision--this conversation is being filmed too--and you’re telling me, without knowing the situation, that I’m detaining a group illegally and you’re not going to come and get these people! This is your job, sir; you work for us--you work for me, the American citizen. I demand that you get someone out here right now!”
The superrvisor on the phone told Simcox that another supervisor was on his way.
Univision completed their interview. The group of UDA’s split with 12 deciding to continue their illegal travel north even after being told that Border Patrol was on its way and that they would be caught. They were not detained in any way.
The remainder of the group, having been abandoned by their coyote guide, decided it was best to return to Mexico. They casually gathered their water bottles and returned south back down the trail and back into Mexico. They were not detained.
Univision waited another 30 minutes for Border Patrol to arrive hoping to interview a supervisor as to why they initially refused to respond. The news reporter from Univision, concerned for her own safety, asked CHD volunteers these questions:
“It seems like Border Patrol is not doing their job, I mean does this happen often-- that they tell you they won’t come out?”
“Not often, but often enough to be frustrating and alarming. This is about national security; they ask you to report suspicious illegal activity and then when you do, they don’t respond.
There’s your Homeland Security. It’s been thirty minutes since they said they were coming. Do you see any Border Patrol out here?” responded Chris Simcox.
“Doesn’t it make you frustrated that you are out here doing this to help them and then they tell you to just let them go?” asked the reporter.
“Yes it does, but we can’t hold them--all we can do is point the beeps in the right direction and hope they catch them upstream,” said Simcox.
Having waited almost thirty minutes after the group of UDA’s dissapeared, the Univision crew had had enough, packed up and left.
Four members of CHD also decided to pack up for the night and go home, not feeling it would do any good to spot any more groups for Border Patrol especially since they refuse to respond to their calls.
One hour and twenty-five minutes after the first call to the Naco Station: arriving on the scene were three Cochise County Sheriff vehicles carrying three deputies, and five Border Patrol vehicles with two BP supervisors.
The officers responded with such force because they were told that CHD volunteers were illegally detaining or holding a group of UDA’s.
They were there to arrest members of CHD--not to respond to a call from citizens about a group of illegals.
They found no illegals being detained. They found no illegals. They found nothing but two law-abiding citizens watching a trail through binoculars.
After realizing no crime had been committed (except by the illegals who were now miles north of our location) the officers apologized for having to question the two volunteers of CHD and drove away.
No officers responded to the call from a citizen about 40 illegals breaking into our country.
Nine law-enforcement agents using eight vehicles to respond to a false report of a group of citizens holding a group of illegals at gun point.
Will charges be filed against a Border Patrol supervisor for making a false report to Cochise County Sheriff?
Was the report made just to target and hassle American citizens?
Do Border Patrol supervisors need to be replaced, again?
Will Border Patrol agents respond to your call?
Look for more on this story in next week’s issue of the Tumbleweed.