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Tag: Texas

Texas Border Patrol Station Would Be Renamed in Honor of Fallen Agent Under Bill

Fallen Border Patrol Agent Donna Doss.

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

The Border Patrol Station in Rocksprings, Texas, would be renamed in honor of a fallen agent under a bill introduced in the U.S. Senate.

Sen. John Cornyn, a Republican, introduced the Donna M. Moss Memorial Act of 2020 on Monday.

Moss, a 15-year-veteran of Border Patrol, was responding to a call for assistance when she was stuck and killed by a vehicle in Abilene on Feb. 2, 2019.

“In addition to leading a distinguished career with the Border Patrol, Agent Doss was a loving wife, daughter, sister, and stepmother,” Cornyn said in a news release. “Her loss was another solemn reminder of the courageous sacrifices law enforcement officers and their families make every day, and I hope memorializing her service at the Border Patrol Station in Rocksprings will help honor her ultimate sacrifice.”

Two days after Moss was killed, Cornyn honored the fallen agent on the Senate floor. Here’s what he said:

“It’s with a heavy heart that I come to the Senate floor this morning to express my deepest condolences for the friends, family, and colleagues of U.S. Border Patrol Agent Donna Doss, who was killed in the line of duty this last weekend.

During her more than 15 years of dedicated service, Agent Doss has made immeasurable contributions to public safety both in Texas and beyond.

In addition to leading a distinguished career, Agent Doss was a loving wife, daughter, sister, and stepmother. Her loss is another solemn reminder of the courageous sacrifices law enforcement officers and their families make every day.

We’re grateful to all of those who put their lives on the line when they put a uniform on each morning ready to confront the unknown challenges that lie ahead. I’m particularly grateful to the men and women in green who make up our nation’s Border Patrol, like Agent Doss. I want to thank Agent Doss’s family for her selfless service and sacrifice, and I send my heartfelt condolences to agent doss’s family, friends, Acting Sector Chief Matthew Hudak, and the agents of the Del Rio Border Patrol sector where she honorably served, and the entire Border Patrol family during this difficult time.”

Homeland Security Investigations tracks down 19th Century Painting Stolen in Italy

“The Assumption of the Virgin Mary” by Italian artist Giuseppe Pappini in 1851.

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

ICE’s Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) tracked down a 19th century painting that was stolen in Italy in 2002.

Acting on a tip from the HSI Attaché Office in Rome, investigators found the painting in the Dallas area, where a private art collected had purchased the painting in 2015 from a dealer who apparently was unaware that it was stolen, ICE says in a news release.

The artwork, titled “the Assumption of the Virgin Mary,” was painted by Italian artist Giuseppe Pappini in August 1851.

The private collector agreed to hand over the painting to investigators so it could be returned to the Abbey of Santa Maria in Sylvis in Sesto al Reghena, a monastery in Italy where it had been stolen.

“Investigating the loss or looting of cultural heritage properties and returning them to their countries of origin is an important part of HSI’s diverse mission” Ryan L. Spradlin, special agent in charge of HSI Dallas, said. “Our specially trained investigators and attachés in more than 40 countries not only partner with governments, agencies and experts who share our mission to protect these items, but they train the investigators of other nations and agencies on how to find, authenticate and enforce the law to recover these items when they emerge in the marketplace.”

Read more about ICE’s investigations of cultural property, arts and antiques.

Man on FBI’s Ten Most Wanted Fugitives List Since 2014 Has Been Captured

Yaser Abdel Said

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

Yaser Abdel Said, who has been on the FBI’s Ten Most Wanted Fugitives List since 2014, has been captured in Justin, Texas, on Wednesday and is in federal custody, the bureau announced Wednesday.

The 63-year-old taxi driver is accused of fatally shooting his two teenage daughters, Amina and Sarah on New Year’s Day 2018.

“Since that night, the members of the Irving Police Department and our partners with the Dallas FBI have tirelessly pursued justice for Amina and Sarah,” Irving Police Chief Jeff Spivey said in a news release. “Even after 12 years of frustration and dead ends, the pursuit for their killer never ceased. Today’s arrest of their father, Yaser Said brings us closer to ensuring justice is served on their behalf.”

FBI Dallas Special Agent in Charge Matthew DeSarno added, “The FBI-led Dallas Violent Crimes Task Force has worked tirelessly to find Yaser Abdel Said. These experienced investigators never gave up on their quest to find him and pledged to never forget the young victims in this case. Said was placed on the Ten Most Wanted Fugitives List nearly six years ago for the heinous act he committed against his daughters. His capture and arrest bring us one step closer to justice for Amina and Sarah.”

Amina and Sarah Said, via Justice for Sarah and Amina Facebook page.

Said is accused of shooting his daughters, 17 and 18 years old, in his taxi cab.

A capital murder warrant was issued for his arrest on Jan. 2, 2008.

The search was led by FBI’s Dallas Violent Crimes Task Force, which includes of FBI special agents and officers from the Carrollton, Dallas, Garland, Grand Prairie, and Irving Police Departments and the Texas Department of Public Safety.

Established in March 1950, the FBI’s Ten Most Wanted Fugitives list has helped track down hundreds of suspects. Said was the 504th person added to the list.

CBP Awards $289.5M Contract for 17 Miles of Wall Construction in Laredo Sector in Texas

An existing wall at border of Mexico. Photo via Congress.

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

Customs and Border Protection has announced a $289.5 million contract to build about 17 miles of contagious new border walls within Border Patrol’s Laredo Sector in Webb County, Texas.

Fisher Sand and Gravel Company, DBA Fisher Industries, received the contract, CBP said Monday.

With the apprehension of nearly 22,000 undocumented immigrants and the seizure of more than 30,000 pounds of drugs so far this fiscal year, the Laredo Sector is one of the busiest in the U.S.

Most of the illegal activate is occurring in areas where the sector lacks infrastructure, access and technology, CBP says.

The plan is part of President Trump’s aggressive push for new wall construction.

“These projects will improve Laredo Sector’s ability to impede and deny illegal border crossings and the drug and human smuggling activities of transnational criminal organizations,” CBP said.

Chris T. Clem Named Acting Chief Patrol Agent of Border Patrol’s Big Bend Sector

Chris Clem, acting chief patrol agent of the Big Bend Sector.

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

Chris T. Clem, a 25-year veteran of the Border Patrol, has been named acting chief patrol agent of the Big Bend Sector, CBP announced Wednesday.

Clem most recently served as deputy chief patrol agent of the El Paso Sector.

He’s held various other leadership positions, including deputy chief patrol agent of the New Orleans Sector and associate chief at Border Patrol Headquarters in Washington D.C.

Clem’s career with Border Patrol began in 1995. He served as patrol agent in charge of four stations – the Casa Grande in Arizona; the Ysleta in Texas, the Truth or Consequences in New Mexico, and Albuquerque in New Mexico.

A native of New Orleans, Clem primarily grew up in Houston. He received a Bachelor of Science in criminal justice and a Master of science in leadership and management from Sam Houston State University.

The Big Bend Sector covers 517 miles of the southwest border, from Sierra Blanca, Texas, to Sanderson, Texas.

Grand Jury Indicts Four People Accused of Plotting to Murder DEA Task Force Officer

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

Four people accused of plotting to murder a DEA task force officer were indicted by a Texas grand jury on Wednesday.

Those charged with conspiracy to use interstate commerce in the commission of murder-for-hire were Manual Garcia Gomez, 22; Jorge Humberto Velazco Larios, 27; Eva Denisse Gomez Garcia, 38; and Alicia Yuritzi Juarez Martinez, 31, NBCDFW-5 reports.

Larios and Gomez have been arrested, while Garcia and Martinez are still in the loose, believed to be in Mexico.

“The Dallas Violent Crime Task Force is dedicated to protecting our citizens. This includes ensuring the safety of our law enforcement partners,” said FBI Dallas Special Agent in Charge Matthew DeSarno. “The defendants wanted to harm a DEA task force officer and that is unacceptable. Fortunately, we were able to prevent a dangerous act from occurring and successfully apprehend a group of violent criminals.”

The defendants face up to 10 years in prison.

McAllen Station Border Patrol Agent Dies from COVID-19

Photo via Border Patrol

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

A Border Patrol agent from the McAllen Station in Texas has died from the coronavirus.

Enrique J. Rositas died Saturday “after a courage battle with COVID-19,” Chief Border Patrol Agent Brian Hastings announced on Twitter.

“Agent Rositas proudly served the United States Border Patrol for nearly 23 years. Our deepest condolences, thoughts and prayers are with his family, friends and coworkers during this difficult time,” Hastings said. “He will be truly missed.

The McAllen Station, which patrols 53 miles along the Rio Grande, is part of the Rio Grand Valley Sector.

“The El Paso Sector mourns the loss of Border Patrol Agent Enrique J. Rositas of the Rio Grande Valley Sector,” El Paso Sector Chief Border Patrol Agent Gloria Chavez tweeted. “Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and the agents & professional staff employees of RGV.”

Off-Duty Border Patrol Agent Killed in Car Crash in Texas

Border Patrol Agent Fernando Morales.

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

An off-duty Border Patrol agent assigned to the Del Rio Sector was killed in a car crash Monday night in Texas.

Fernando Morales, 51, was driving a 2017 Volkswagen Passat on U.S. 277 near Del Rio when a 2016 Freightliner truck veered into oncoming traffic in a no-passing zone, KRQE reports.

“I am deeply saddened to inform you of the off duty death of Border Patrol Agent Fernando Morales,” Del Rio Sector Chief Patrol Agent Austin Skero tweeted Wednesday. “He is survived by his wife and four children. On behalf of our sector family, I extend my deepest condolences to his family, friends and colleagues as we mourn his passing.”

Morales is a native of El Paso and graduated from Irvin High School.