Immigrants Flown from RGV to Del Rio for Processing
DONNA - The overflow of immigrants in the Rio Grande Valley sector has led to a temporary inter-sector relocation of immigrant families.
Border Patrol responds to numerous arrivals of immigrant families on the border, but they're reporting challenges to their processing space.
At the beginning of May, they opened a newly-constructed, temporary processing facility in Donna.
It increased their capacity by 500 more, bringing their overall capacity in the sector to about 3,300 immigrants who can be processed at a time.
On May 8, 2019, Dustin Araujo, Special Operations Supervisor in the RGV sector said, "the Donna facility did increase our capability to increase the capacity of illegal aliens we can hold, but we are over capacity."
The temporary facility maxed out days after opening.
As of Friday, May 10, 2019, Border Patrol Del Rio Sector released a media statement to the Del Rio News Herald who shared it with CHANNEL FIVE NEWS.
Raul Ortiz who was the Deputy Chief in the Rio Grande Valley is now chief in Del Rio.
He stated Del Rio is helping his former sector process families who have no criminal history.
In the press release Ortiz states, "Del Rio Sector is sharing that burden by processing some of the family units apprehended in the Rio Grande Valley Sector."
Immigrant families who don't fit into processing space in the Valley are going through a disjointed processing method, as a result.
After they arrive in the Valley and receive a medical screening, Immigration Customs Enforcement is flying them out to Del Rio where they are processed and then released, some to non-governmental organizations like Val Verde Citizens Humanitarian Coalition.
Single adults and even some in families are detained by ICE.
The agency is shuffling to make space. One immigrant man, Francisco Brizuela Hernandez, currently in detention at El Valle in Raymondville said they've been moving people around "to New York, others to Mississippi, others to Kentucky.
They're sending them to all kinds of states, because there's many, too many.
There's a lot of people. It's completely full here where we're at."
Hernandez has a bandaged hand; he lost two fingers back in his home country.
He says there's so many people at the detention facility it's made it challenging to receive timely medical assistance for the discomfort associated with his injury.
According to an ICE spokeswoman, there are currently 953 migrants at El Valle.
The length of time the flight will continue was not disclosed.
Last week, Rio Grande Valley Border Patrol stated they will be trying to construct a second tent in Donna.