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Jim Hogg County Residents Speak Out about Illegal Immigration

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Posted: Jul 21, 2014 9:58 PM

Updated: Jul 21, 2014 10:29 PM

HEBBRONVILLE - Residents in Jim Hogg County are dealing with their share of the crisis on the border.

Two highways lead north from the border toward the county seat in Hebbronville.

Traveling north on FM 649, there is no sign of any effort at border security. The ranch fences, though, reveal the damage ranchers say is caused by illegal immigrants.

Ranchers say immigrants jump fences to circumvent the Border Patrol checkpoint.

"At the Border Patrol station, I know they have a lot of little immigrant kids there. They're saying it's like a little hotel there," Ricky Ramirez said.

Ramirez has lived in Jim Hogg County all his life. His family owns about 1,000 acres of ranchland.

Ramirez said he recently saw about 15 illegals at one location.

"(They were) all dressed in black, with backpacks ... we don't know where they went from there. We called the Border Patrol on them. When they showed up they were gone," Ramirez said.

Ramirez is unsure what effect the deployment of the National Guard will have in South Texas.

Ramirez, like most people in the county, said he has not noticed any recent increase in smuggling or illegal activity. He said the flow of immigrants remains steady.

CHANNEL 5 NEWS contacted the Jim Hogg County sheriff's office about problems with illegal immigrants. Chief Deputy Lorenzo Benavides said they have not experienced "anything out of hand."

As for the National Guard, he said they will take all the help they can get.

Topics: jim hogg, county, illegal, immigration, crisis, border, central america, checkpoint, south texas, national guard

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