Brownsville Resident Frustrated over Increased Border Activity

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BROWNSVILLE- One of Brownsville’s southmost property owners said he is fed up with all the drugs crossing on his land.

Rusty Monsees said he is seeing an increase in activity from the river. He’s also getting more phone calls about the activity.

Monsees has become the liaison between authorities and his neighbors.

“The amount of drugs that are coming through is phenomenal,” he said.

Monsees’s land is right on the river. The border fence is in his front yard. “They come over the fence; they climb over the fence,” he said.

Earlier this week, a Border Patrol chase on Monsees’s land ended with agents confiscating drugs and the driver escaping across the river.

Narcotics are common in this area and in the neighborhood up the road.

“I've got people that call me constantly, because they are afraid it's going to be found out that they are reporting activities,” Monsees said.

Monsees said he passes information on to Border Patrol. He said he doesn’t mind being the messenger.

“I have less to lose than they do,” Monsees said. “They're looking at their livelihood, they're looking at their kids, they're looking at their extended family, they're looking at their home and everything else.”

Monsees is frustrated more isn’t being done to secure the border where the fence ends. He said DPS troopers rarely patrol the area, despite the state border surge. “They’re taking monies and they’re not working,” he said.

Border Patrol admitted they’re seeing a spike in smuggling attempts in Cameron County. CHANNEL 5 NEWS has reported on some of the most brazen attempts in recent months.

Monsees said he wants law enforcement in Hidalgo and Starr counties to move down the river to protect his property from smugglers. He said he fears things will only continue to get worse.

Public Affairs Officer Omar Zamora from the Border Patrol’s Rio Grande Valley sector sent CHANNEL 5 NEWS this statement:

“The RGV Sector Border Patrol strongly encourages the public to engage in their civic duty and report suspicious activity to local law enforcement agencies.  All reported suspicious activity remains anonymous and helps law enforcement keep the community safe.  Criminal organizations utilize tactics that put the public in danger. By taking a stand against crime in their neighborhoods, community members help prevent misfortune and the loss of life that could arise from cruel and callous smuggling methods used by criminals.”

People can call Border Patrol’s anonymous tip line at 1-800-863-9382.