Hidalgo Co. Constables Concerned with Illegal Activity this Holiday Season
MCALLEN - Hidalgo County precinct constables said people crossing illegally into the U.S. has them concerned for residents’ safety.
Hidalgo County Precinct 4 constables said the recent influx of people crossing the border illegally is keeping them busy. They said human smugglers and other crimes are not taking a break this holiday season either.
Hidalgo County Precinct 4 deputy constable Andrew Perez said it’s important they keep in contact with ranchers in the area. He said the roads are known routes for human smuggling.
“At times, these illegal immigrants have no concern for the safety of the community. And when they want to bail out in to the brush, they run into property and fences of these ranch owners. So, the ranch owners are the ones to contact the office,” he said.
Perez said he also receives calls from U.S. Border Patrol to assist with human smuggling cases. He said a lot of people are currently trying to get back into the U.S. after visiting family in Mexico over the holidays.
“The deputies always use caution when dealing with illegal immigrants and traffickers… It’s always the possibility that they can carry firearms,” he said.
Rancher Fred Cappadona said he has called his precinct to respond to his home for years. He said he provides tips to authorities all the time.
Cappadona said he deals with people crossing illegally onto his property on a regular basis.
“In the past, we had some break-ins across the street at the uncle’s house. They broke in there and they tore it up,” he said. “And then they came across and went behind my barn here and to my father-in-law’s house. But, we caught them and we turned them into the authorities.”
The rancher said he can never tell where and when the crossers will show up.
“We did have a young man. (He) woke up one morning on the patio, he was sound asleep. How he got in there? I don’t know,” he said. “I woke him up… He was from Honduras or Nicaragua, I don’t recall. Anyway, he moved on his own way.”
Perez said as long as ranchers like Cappadona continue to have these experiences, his job will continue to be focused more on border protection.
CHANNEL 5 NEWS wanted to know if human smuggling cases are increasing in Hidalgo County Precinct 4. We reached out to U.S. Border Patrol, and are currently waiting for their response.
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