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The World and Everything In It
The Cat and Mouse Game at the Mexico-U.S. Border
"Paso del Norte Bridge Pass of the North here people crossed from Horace to Al Paso or Paso to warez every day they crossed by car and foot to go to work to school to shop to visit family chaos and clutter hustle and bustle and adjacent train trestle called Black Bridge crosses nearby the scene of the tragic shooting. So many years ago. US border, patrol agent shot, and killed a fifteen year old Mexican boy after that. So what happened at the Rio Grande? Well, the facts are disputed. So we'll tell both sides of the story was talking about the circumstances that brought about the shooting the boy's parents say Sergio was playing a game with friends run across the border to the US side touch defense run back without getting. Caught kind of like a game of chicken. Yeah. I mean what kid hasn't played some version of that Game Kisha branch works for Barra Borderland Connections a nonprofit helping asylum seekers. She spends her days at shelters in El, Paso and shelters in Horace. She works closely with migrants and Border Patrol agents all that to say she's familiar with the area and the dichotomy of working with both sides. There are some kids that that play at the border, the border in New Mexico in an opera. There's a community right beside the border wall. There's a a lot of land and there's a trash pile, and so sometimes, the like moms will go out in like pick things out of the trash Powell for their homes like for household items. There are people that go into that space like where we go to visit the wall there some kids that come up to the wall and they talk to us and we'll just have conversations with them. So. Yeah. Are Kids that play in that area, but they play in the area because it's their backyard. But that's in an opera. What about downtown in the Rio Grande Canal by the bridge where the shooting happened according to my cabdriver it's not generally an area where kids play. Do kids play around the fence around the border. No. They don't let them get near. So that leads us to the other side of the story. Border Patrol says, Sergio was a coyote helping undocumented people illegally cross into the United States. coyotes often use coordinated distraction techniques. Draw the agents attention away from his surroundings victim. An Harrah's was the chief Border Patrol agent out of Paso when the shooting occurred he's now retired we used to call those still do they would call it a sacrificial room. Send someone a across or group appeal across to get the agent to react get the agent to start chasing a group and and what they do is soon as the agent leaves that that high. Position they say whatever they want to send. WHAT THE REAL INTENT It's almost like a diversion. So that happens all the time dangerous game, the game of cat-and-mouse. The boys ran back and forth across the border agent Mesa detained. One of Sergio's friends Sergio ran back to the Mexican side. He hid behind a pillar under the train trestle. That's when agent Mesa shot him in the face. Mesa says Sergio and his friends were throwing rocks, both men, Harrah's and George Gomez. The agent I talked with at the beginning of this episode, Say agents are trained for physical assaults cures, Gomez. Goh, there's different scenario that we run the training. Obviously, I think covered drive away from the air run seek cover and backup call for backup deescalate. Behavior. Here's the thing I don't want to downplay rock-throwing. David. With Iraq agent Mesa may very well have been endangered. Peres. Getting right and he's got a he's hunched over the guy that he was arresting. And you got your back towards man. You're you're you're really at risk even under the high pressure of split-second decision making the use of lethal force here has been criticized bystanders video captured the fatal shooting. In the video Sergio unarmed again, Kisha Branch who works at the border. The story that came out in the news is different from a story that we hear from the agents themselves. So I don't. I don't I have I have no answers Sergio's parents of course, do want answers and a legal remedy. Meaning an award of damages, the family believes the US. Constitution. Guarantees Sergio certain rights now the constitution of the United States setup the framework for the American government and the various rights people have with respect to the government right and the constitution applies to more than US citizens the preamble the very beginning of constitution says we the people of the United States so it doesn't specify Melvin Odi is a constitutional law professor at Faulkner University. which generally talking about in the way, the courts interpret these things into generally talking about the people who comprise the United States. We the people of the United States People Citizens Resident Aliens International Travelers in this country on holiday or for business when you're in the United States, those protections apply to you. But when you go back to wherever your home country is, those objections do not apply United States meaning of course, that's going to be. The Continental United States, but also include The US territories the special maritime jurisdiction of the United States which would be like on the seas. As far as the borders. The constitution applies within our borders and again sort of the territories that we control. Chris Galindo is one of the lawyers who represented the Hernandez family. Here's a clip from a video called Justice for Sergio Audio and Spanish here from a univision news investigation. Dominicano. Wasim Anthem Nisa. He says, can we sue the American government to be sure Hernandez was in Mexico and is Mexican the American government said we can't sue them because this is Mexico. Not The United States we're saying not bullet originated in the United States and they have to pay for the injustice. They did Moses Shindo is guy. I WITH MY NEIGHBORS GET TICKET WINDOW GOES ON WE are saying there are certain laws and certain ways. The Border Patrol agents need to treat human beings Mexican or American according to United States Laws Federal K. K. K. K.. You the Sergio's mom pleads God for help for justice this is going to haunt me until I leave this world. This acronym you can. Okay. Vido. Sergio's parents sued agent Mesa in Federal Court for excessive use of force. They claim Mesa violated Sergio's rights under the fourth and fifth amendments. Now here's a reminder of what those are faulkner professor Melvin Odi. Okay so The Fourth Amendment Fifth Amendment each sort of presents a bundle of rights but the fourth amendment in particular. Presents a list of restrictions on government agents were investigating crimes. Okay. So the prominent one is protection against. Searches and seizures. The court has interpreted seizure to include killing the taking of human. Life. Would have been saying. This was an unreasonable search and seizure the fifth amendment includes several closets. Relevant one, but there's a catch all. Near the end of the Fifth Amendment that says a person can't read deprived of life liberty or property without due process of law. So. In this case, the young man's life was taken. And the Fifth Amendment says, you can't do that without due process of without fundamentally fair legal proceedings. The first time this case worked its way through the court system the fifth US Circuit Court. Of Appeals dismissed the case it held Sergio's parents were not entitled to fourth and Fifth Amendment protections under various legal doctrines, but the Supreme Court said the fifth circuit and properly applied those legal doctrines. So it vacated the decision rendered null and void that was Hernandez one in. Two thousand, seventeen, the Supreme Court then remanded the case with specific instructions. It's at another question needed to be addressed. I is a givens remedy available. The Fifth Circuit said, no in this Supreme Court, appeal followed Hernandez