Suspected Human Smuggler Shoots Border Patrol Agent

Federal authorities say a Border Patrol agent was shot in New Mexico on Thursday while attempting to make a traffic stop in its El Paso region. The shots were fired by someone in a car, which officials believe was being used to smuggle people into the United States.

The shooting occurred close to Lordsburg, New Mexico, a small remote town about 90 miles north of the U.S.-Mexico border.

The gunfire hit the agent in the chest multiple times, but he was able to avoid life-threatening injury thanks to the body armor he was wearing at the time. During the shooting, the unidentified officer returned fire at the fleeing vehicle, causing it to get “involved in a rolled-over accident a few miles down the road,” according to authorities.

When the vehicle crashed, authorities were able to take six people into custody. Two of the group were transferred to a trauma center in El Paso for treatment. Their conditions are not known at the time of this reporting.

The identities of those involved have not been released as authorities did not provide further details on the incident. However, the investigation is ongoing with the assistance of the FBI and the New Mexico State Police.

The shooting happened amid the border crisis that has thousands of migrants crossing into the U.S. from Mexico. In recent weeks, the situation has garnered attention, and immigration and border enforcement under the Biden administration has come under increased scrutiny.

President Joe Biden revealed on Thursday that he would make his first visit as president to the El Paso border in Texas. While he said the details were being worked out, he did disclose that the visit would be next week, sometime in between his meeting with leaders of Mexico and Canada in Mexico City.

In another announcement Thursday, Biden said that the U.S. would rapidly deport those who illegally enter the U.S. from Cuba, Haiti, Venezuela, and Nicaragua. Under the new policy, 30,000 migrants from those countries will be allowed into the U.S. every month.