San Diego — A federal lawsuit over the fatal shooting of a Mexican immigrant accused of throwing rocks at a Border Patrol agent is going after not only the agent who pulled the trigger, but some of the agency’s highest-ranking officials at the time, alleging they failed to address excessive force concerns over such “rocking” incidents along the border.
The use-of-force issue has generated a firestorm of public opinion in recent years. Civil rights advocates, Mexico’s government and a law enforcement research group have urged the Border Patrol to refrain from lethal force when faced with rock throwers, while agents in the field contend they need to protect themselves in what is often a dangerous job.
The American Antitrust Institute elected Steve Shadowen to be one of its presenters at a symposium aimed at exploring the implications and applications of antitrust law in the wake of the landmark U.S. Supreme Court decision in FTC v. Actavis, Inc.
Before 16 federal appellate judges for the Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals, Steve Shadowen argued today an issue of first impression: whether the Constitution's fundamental right to live extends to a non-citizen standing in Mexico who was unjustifiably shot and killed by a U.S. border patrol agent. "If there ever was a case that calls out for practical and functional judicial review of executive U.S. conduct, this is that case," Mr. Shadowen argued. "There is no legal black hole on the Border.”
A Times investigation — based on the Border Patrol's Use of Force report obtained under the Freedom of Information Act, Mexican autopsy and police records, court documents and interviews with four witnesses — raises questions about whether the agent who fired from the boat overstated the threat from shore, and whether the shooting was justified.
Robert Hilliard, a lawyer in Corpus Christi, Texas, who represents Arevalo's widow, said the Border Patrol needed to be held accountable for killing an unarmed man in a crowded park. "Firing an automatic weapon on a group where children are also playing is their first option?" he asked.
by: Carrie Johnson
Two months ago, James Tomsheck was pushed out of his job as internal affairs chief for U.S. Customs and Border Protection.
At the time, authorities criticized him for not doing enough to investigate abuse and corruption.
But now Tomsheck tells a very different story: about a culture that goes out of its way to evade legal restraints.
Use of force by law enforcement agents along the Southwest border has drawn attention and criticism recently, after reports that Border Patrol agents shot and killed unarmed migrants and faced no consequences.
Since 2010, 28 people have been killed by agents and officers. Tomsheck says he believes about a quarter of the incidents are highly suspicious.
H&S and its affiliate HMG filed suit on behalf
of the family of Guillermo Arevalo Pedraza who died on September 3, 2012 on the
border between Nuevo Laredo, Mexico and Laredo, Texas. Mr. Arevalo was shot by
US Border Patrol agents from a boat on the Rio Grande River. At the time of the shooting, Mr. Arevalo was
barbecuing with his family at Nuevo Laredo Park on the sandy banks of the
Mexican side of the border. He was left
to die in the arms of his young daughter as the gunmen who opened fire into the
crowd of picnickers fled the scene.