To understand the outrage at the shooting of a 14 year old by a Border Patrol Agent in El Paso, one has to visualize the location of the shooting, time of day, and the age of the youngsters involved. As you read through the FBI spokesperson's description of events that led up to the death, look at this picture (click on the picture) and remember it was broad daylight, in the middle of the afternoon, at a Port of Entry with numerous visitors and tourists around. Also remember, these were young, 14 year old boys.
FBI Spokesperson Andrea Simmons provides the following report:
Monday night's incident started about 6:30 p.m. It was daylight and the sun was still very high in the sky. Border Patrol agents responded to a report of a group of suspected illegal immigrants being smuggled into the United States near the Paso del Norte port of entry. A suspect identified as Oscar Ivan Pineda Ayala was initially detained on the Rio Grande levy (black bridge). Another agent arrived on his bicycle along the cement apron that forms the riverbank on the U.S. side. That agent detained a second subject, Augustin Alcaraz Reyes. The rest of the group, teens, ran under the bridge on the Mexico side and began to throw rocks at the agent. The bicycle agent, who had Reyes detained on the ground, gave verbal commands to the remaining subjects to "stop and retreat." However, the teens surrounded the bicycle agent and continued to throw rocks at him. The bicycle agent then fired his service weapon several times, striking and killing 14 year old Sergio Adrian Hernandez Huereca.
Simmons told CNN earlier she did not know whether 14 yr old Sergio was on the Mexican or U.S. side of the border, but that the agent never left U.S. territory. Sergio's body was laying dead on the Mexican side of the border, Simmons said.
Ciudad Juarez spokesman S. Belmonte said 14 yr old Sergio was shot in the head. "The young boy was not armed," Belmonte said. "He did not have the physical size to threaten anyone. The aggression (by the U.S. agent) is evident."
The shooting occurred underneath the Black Bridge, a railroad span that connects the two countries. The FBI, which has jurisdiction in any assault on a federal officer, is leading the U.S. investigation with assistance from the El Paso Police Department, the Border Patrol and other federal agencies, Simmons said.
The shooting comes less than two weeks after the May 31 death of a Mexican illegal immigrant who had been detained three days earlier by border agents in California. San Diego police, who are investigating the death of Anastasio Hernandez, said he was beaten with a baton and shot with a stun gun after he became combative. California medical officials ruled his death a homicide. The investigation in that case continues. Mexican officials complained Tuesday that they see an increasing trend. "The growing frequency of this type of event reflects a worrisome increment in the use of excessive force on the part of some border authorities," the Foreign Ministry said. According to the ministry, the number of Mexicans who have been killed or wounded by U.S. border authorities has increased from five in 2008 to 12 in 2009 and 17 so far this year.