U.S. Border Patrol Continues to Exaggerate Danger to Agents to Justify Violence Against Immigrants

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Debbie Nathan, The Intercept, June 1, 2018 – “[A]ccording to the FBI, only 397 agents were assaulted in 2016, compared with the CBP’s inflated claim to the public of 454. The Intercept attempted to obtain numbers from the FBI for 2017, to compare that data with CBP’s claim of 786 assaults, but the FBI said it would not be publishing the numbers until late May.  Now that data is available. It shows a 9 percent rise in the number of agents assaulted from 2016 to 2017 — from 397 to 432. But the data also shows a 22 percent drop in the number of agents injured, from 132 to 103. … As FBI statistics make clear, working as a Border Patrol agent is much safer than working as a local police officer or sheriff’s deputy. On average, whether or not they are injured, Border Patrol agents face only around one-fourth as many assaults as do other types of law enforcement officers.  So why is the Border Patrol’s use of lethal force increasing, along with the number of assaults reported against its agents — even as injuries to those agents have gone down? Could the agents themselves be provoking confrontations with migrants?”

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