The Canadian Press - ONLINE EDITION

Correction: Immigration Overload-National Guard story

  • Print
A Texas National Guardsman exits an observation tower in Hidalgo, Texas, on Thursday, Aug. 14, 2014. Several dozen soldiers in the Rio Grande Valley are the first of up to 1,000 called up by Gov. Rick Perry last month, Texas National Guard Master Sgt. Ken Walker of the Joint Counterdrug Task Force said Thursday. (AP Photo/Christopher Sherman)

Enlarge Image

A Texas National Guardsman exits an observation tower in Hidalgo, Texas, on Thursday, Aug. 14, 2014. Several dozen soldiers in the Rio Grande Valley are the first of up to 1,000 called up by Gov. Rick Perry last month, Texas National Guard Master Sgt. Ken Walker of the Joint Counterdrug Task Force said Thursday. (AP Photo/Christopher Sherman)

HIDALGO, Texas - HIDALGO, Texas (AP) — In a story Aug. 14 about the National Guard arriving on the Texas border, The Associated Press, relying on information from the Texas National Guard, reported erroneously that the deployments were part of the 1,000 troops ordered by Gov. Rick Perry. Texas National Guard Master Sgt. Ken Walker said the troops, which are part of a counterdrug task force, do not count toward Perry's "Operation Strong Safety."

A corrected version of the story is below:

National Guard troops arrive at Texas-Mexico border

National Guard troops take up observation posts along the Texas-Mexico border

By CHRISTOPHER SHERMAN

Associated Press

A new wave of National Guard troops has taken up observation posts along the Texas-Mexico border as part of the state's Joint Counterdrug Task Force.

The several dozen soldiers deployed in the Rio Grande Valley this week are not part of the up to 1,000 troops called up by Gov. Rick Perry last month.

Several guardsmen were seen Thursday afternoon manning an observation tower along the busy road leading to the Hidalgo International Bridge.

The soldiers are specifically trained to man such observation towers in the area belonging to local law enforcement agencies and U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Texas National Guard Master Sgt. Ken Walker of the Joint Counterdrug Task Force said Thursday. They will serve as extra eyes on the border and report suspicious activity to authorities.

A Customs and Border Protection document viewed by The Associated Press indicated that guardsmen would be manning CBP towers in Hidalgo and Starr counties, as well as towers for the Hidalgo and Pharr police departments and the Hidalgo County Sheriff's Office.

"They're just there for support," Walker said of the soldiers who entered the field this week after training in the area last week. "We're just trying to give some relief to the guys at Customs and Border Protection" and other law enforcement agencies. He said the duration of their deployment was not set, but that current funding for their mission only runs through September.

The guardsmen seen Thursday dressed in camouflage uniforms were manning a Hidalgo police tower.

Hidalgo Police Chief Rodolfo Espinoza said he would normally not have his department's two towers manned. They have cameras that can pan the area and record activity, but having a person that can recognize something suspicious and report it is more valuable, he said.

"It is good to have them," Espinoza said of the soldiers. "It is a positive benefit for everybody."

Still, speaking like a police chief whose office sits less than a mile from the Rio Grande, Espinoza said, "I think the only way you could secure the river is if every 10 yards you had someone standing there. It's impossible."

Perry also has called for up to 1,000 National Guard troops to come to the Texas-Mexico border for a "deter and Refer" mission. On Wednesday, during a visit to Camp Swift Army National Guard Training Center outside Austin, Perry said troops were needed to defend the nation against "narco-terrorists." Perry, a Republican possibly mulling a run for the White House, had said the soldiers were necessary to help secure the border while the Border Patrol was busy with a surge in illegal immigration.

From October to July, 63,000 unaccompanied children were arrested after entering the U.S. illegally, double the number from the same period a year earlier. Another 63,000 families — mothers or fathers with young children — were arrested during that period.

Those arrests have slowed, however. Arrests of children travelling alone and children and parents travelling together dropped by about half in July from the previous month.

Fact Check

Fact Check

Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories?
Please use the form below and let us know.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes

    No

  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective April 16, 2010.

letters

Make text: Larger | Smaller

LATEST VIDEO

It’s the End Of the Term And They Know It, Part Two

View more like this

Photo Store Gallery

  • A Yellow-bellied Sapsucker hangs out on a birch tree in St. Vital. The Yellow-bellied Sapsucker is considered a keystone species. Other species take advantage of the holes that the birds make in trees. A group of sapsuckers are collectively known as a
  • Marc Gallant / Winnipeg Free Press.  Local/Weather Standup- Catching rays. Prairie Dog stretches out at Fort Whyte Centre. Fort Whyte has a Prairie Dog enclosure with aprox. 20 dogs young and old. 060607.

View More Gallery Photos

Poll

Who will you vote for in Wednesday's mayoral race?

View Results

View Related Story

Ads by Google