One dead after U.S. agent fires across Mexican border at suspected smugglers

PHOENIX Fri Oct 12, 2012 2:47pm EDT

1 of 3. A school boy walks past candles people left at the site where a 16-year old boy was shot at by a U.S. Border Patrol agent Wednesday night in Nogales October 12, 2012. A U.S. Border Patrol agent shot at suspected drug smugglers who were hurling rocks from Mexico across the border into Arizona, the agency said on Thursday, and Mexican authorities said one of them was killed.

Credit: Reuters/Alonso Castillo

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PHOENIX (Reuters) - A U.S. Border Patrol agent shot at suspected drug smugglers who were hurling rocks from Mexico across the border into Arizona, the agency said on Thursday, and Mexican authorities said one of them was killed.

Border Patrol agents responded to reports of two suspected smugglers in Nogales, Arizona, late Wednesday and watched as they dropped drugs on the Arizona side of the border, the agency said in a written statement.

The smugglers then fled back across the border into Mexico and "began assaulting the agents with rocks," the statement said.

One agent fired after the suspects refused orders to stop and one of them apparently was hit, the statement said.

A police commander in Nogales in the Mexican state of Sonora, said Thursday that a Mexican male was killed in the incident.

The shooting brought sharp criticism from Mexico's Foreign Ministry, which said that the initial report "creates serious, new doubts about the use of lethal force by U.S. Border Patrol agents, something that both the Mexican government and society strongly deplore and condemn.

"It is imperative that the relevant U.S. authorities proceed with a timely and transparent investigation, and take it to its ultimate consequences," the ministry said in a statement sent to Reuters.

An FBI spokesman declined to comment, citing the investigation.

The shooting came more than a week after an agent was shot and killed near the U.S.-Mexico border in an apparent friendly fire incident.

Nicholas Ivie, 30, was responding to a tripped sensor near Naco, Arizona, in an area well-known for smuggling activities. Another agent was shot and wounded, and a third agent was unharmed.

(Reporting by David Schwartz in Phoenix and Lizbeth Diaz and David Alire Garcia in Mexico City; Editing by Corrie MacLaggan and Bill Trott)

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Comments (9)
braaapppp wrote:
Hope they get the message about throwing rocks in Mex. Its an act of war.

Oct 11, 2012 12:16am EDT  --  Report as abuse
lazywolf wrote:
Everything on the Arizona border is spin until after the election (probably beyond if Obama wins). Janet’s head must be ready to pop. Make no mistake; we have a border war going on with the real powers that be in Mexico. And the American people haven’t heard ten cents worth of truth in the last week

Oct 11, 2012 12:45am EDT  --  Report as abuse
lazywolf wrote:
It at least takes a rock to make an agent open fire….so what does that tell you?

Oct 12, 2012 1:01am EDT  --  Report as abuse
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