March 25, 2013

No news is not good news

Many readers are looking for an update on our friend David and I'm disappointed to say that there has been no word as to his whereabouts. I've received a lot of emails from readers in the US offering to assist David, to help him to make contact with immigrant organizations, and even offers of jobs. Thank you all very much for caring. One reader even made a deposit to Delmy's bank account to help her and the kids out for another week or so. We've also made another transfer to her account.

Not knowing where he is is extremely distressing, because I know that if it was humanly possible, he would have called his wife Delmy to let her know that he was okay. He would know that she would be frantic with worry. I am, too! Since he hasn't called, I wonder if he was robbed, if his cell phone was confiscated by authorities, if he is just somewhere where he can't charge it, or if something worse has happened. ICE inmates are allowed to make calls, but only if they have money in their 'account' to do so. Would a fellow detainee lend him money to call home? I think someone would be that kind if it is allowed, don't you?

I continue to check ICE's online detainee locator and David is not listed. If he was detained shortly after crossing the border as we were told, that would have been almost three weeks ago. I suppose he could be listed under another name. We could transfer some money to his account if we knew his detainee number, but obviously since we can't find him listed, we can't find his number.

David believed that he would be working and sending money home by now. He also told us that he had arranged to sell his motorcycle before he left. The buyer who was supposed to buy it apparently never came up with the money, so Delmy doesn't have the funds that were expected to tide her over. El Jefe may offer to try to help her to sell it.

More Texas illegal immigrant news

La Prensa had a story about six immigrants being killed in Texas. I looked for US articles to see if they gave more information.

On March 20, Kingsville, Texas police were chasing a truck when its driver turned into the entrance road of a US Naval Air Station. When the driver accelerated past the first gate guard without stopping, a pop-up barrier was activated to stop the truck. The truck, believed to have reached 70 mph, crashed into the barrier, immediately killing six and injuring nine. Emergency teams had to use hydraulic rescue tools to remove the victims from the wreck. A seventh victim, a woman, died later in the hospital. The driver, a suspected coyote, survived and was taken to a military hospital. Since this happened around midnight, it is suspected that the driver didn't even know he had turned into the entrance road of a military base. The guards can't be blamed because, for all they knew, this could have been a terrorist attack on the Naval Air Station. South Texas, Corpus Christi, Coastal Bend

Final denial barrier, Kingsville NAS
Final denial barrier, Kingsville NAS
KIII TV has a video (embedded above) of the operation of this "final denial barrier", showing it crushing a huge truck. In this case, it was a pickup truck with 10 people in the cab of the truck and another five under a tarp in the pickup bed. The force of the impact was so great that it broke a natural gas line and a water line and severed an electrical cable. The people in the bed of the truck were thrown through the cab. This photo was provided by the Texas Department of Public Safety.

ICE later reported that people in the truck were from Guatemala and Honduras. No names were given in any of the many articles about this incident.

Another coyote story in Houston, Texas

In looking for that story, I also came across this March 21 story in Houston, Texas. As a Texas Motorist Assistance Officer pulled over to help a stalled truck, he noticed a large number of people inside the box truck. He looked to the driver and the driver took off running on foot. Police found 16 people from South and Central America who said they had been inside the truck for 18 hours without food or water. Police officers pooled their money and bought the immigrants food and water. They were later turned over to ICE. The driver was not found.

Again, there were no names given in the reports. Here are some quotes from one article:

"Local officials [of Kleberg and Brooks Counties in south Texas] say so many undocumented immigrants are dying in the area that they are running out of space to bury them.

"Deaths of illegal immigrants at the U.S.-Mexico border are up 27 percent in the past year as border crossers use increasingly remote and dangerous areas, according to a report released this week by the National Foundation for American Policy, a Washington-based research group that is calling for a temporary worker program.

"Nationally, 477 illegal immigrants died at the border in 2012, compared to 375 in 2011, even though illegal immigration generally is down, the report said."

I'm glad that Delmy doesn't read the news.


Related articles:

March 16: Saying goodbye to another friend
March 17: Where is David?
March 19: More sequestered Hondurans in the US

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