(NEW YORK) — Local police have confirmed that one person is dead after a Border Patrol agent fired his gun at a crowd throwing rocks across the border fence in Nogales, Ariz., late last Wednesday night, and Mexican media reports say the deceased is a 14-year-old male.
According to the Border Patrol, agents in Nogales were responding to a report of two suspected smugglers on a road that parallels the border fence at 11:30 p.m. when they saw the alleged smugglers drop a narcotics load on the U.S. side of the boundary and flee back into Mexico.
The Border Patrol told ABC Tucson affiliate KGUN that while the smugglers were trying to climb back over the fence, a crowd on the Mexican side of the border in Nogales, Sonora began pelting the agents with rocks.
“Subjects at the scene then began assaulting the agents with rocks,” the Border Patrol said in a statement. “After verbal commands from agents to cease were ignored, one agent then discharged his service firearm. One of the subjects appeared to have been hit.”
The Border Patrol says it then notified the Mexican government of the shooting, and is “fully cooperating with the FBI-led investigation” now underway.
Nogales Police confirmed to KGUN that one person died at the scene.
A reporter for the Mexican radio station XENY took a photo of emergency personnel removing the body from the street, and reported that the victim was male. Other Mexican media have reported that the person who died at the scene was a 14-year-old male. The Border Patrol declined to confirm the age and gender of the deceased when asked by ABC News.
In June 2011, a Border Patrol agent in San Diego fatally shot a suspected border crosser who was allegedly perched on top of the border fence, throwing rocks and wood with exposed nails at agents while they attempted to arrest other suspected border crossers, authorities told ABC affiliate KGTV in San Diego.
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