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TPD Chief Magnus gets Biden nod to head U.S. Customs and Border Protection

President Joe Biden is nominating the head of Tucson's Police Department, Chris Magnus, to head the parent agency of the U.S. Border Patrol. Magnus was an outspoken critic of Trump administration border policies.... Read more»

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Border Patrol downplays agents' racist, misogynistic Facebook group

Agents in a secret Facebook group shared crudely manipulated images of men sexually assaulting Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a New York Democrat and frequent antagonist of the Border Patrol; joked about migrants who died while trying to enter the United States; and made racist insults about Central Americans. The group called itself “I’m 10-15,” Border Patrol radio code for “aliens in custody,” and included some 9,500 current or former agents. ... Read more»

Audit: Hiring of customs, border agents better, but still falling short

Customs and Border Protection is getting better at attracting and hiring job applicants, but the agency still faces thousands of vacancies in its law enforcement ranks, according to a recent Government Accountability Office report.... Read more»

Guest opinion

Hoover: Border Patrol's 'hot water' claims are all wet

Here we go again. The Border Patrol is retaliating against humanitarians working to save lives in the desert. Brandon Judd of the National Border Patrol Council recently said, "If that water heats up in the desert, it's actually a lot more dangerous to drink extremely heated water than what it is if you don't have that water at all." ... Read more»

Furloughed federal workers feel like ‘pawns’ in shutdown fight

The government shutdown that began Friday may have been short-lived, but that doesn’t mean the thousands of federal workers in Arizona who were sent home Monday or made to work without pay feel any less put-upon.... Read more»

Homeland Security may not have capacity to hire 15,000 border officers Trump promised

The Homeland Security Department may not have the resources needed to hire the thousands of new agents President Trump has ordered, and even if it could it might not know how to best deploy them.... Read more»

Court gives family of slain Mexican teen new chance to sue BP agent

The Supreme Court has ordered a lower court to reconsider its decision to throw out a lawsuit that a Mexican family filed against the Border Patrol agent who fatally shot their son across the border. The Texas case may still have a long way to go in the courts, but the outcome could affect a similar 2012 case in Nogales.... Read more»

Polygraphs for Border Patrol applicants seen as hurdle to hiring rush

Customs and Border Protection officials are considering ways to waive polygraphs for some applicants as the agency works to meet President Trump’s push to hire thousands more border agents. But it would also relax a policy meant to curb a wave of corruption that CBP faced in its last hiring boom, a change critics called “alarming.”... Read more»

New Border Patrol chief faces uphill battle to reform agency

As the first outsider appointed to run the Border Patrol in its 92-year history, former FBI official Mark Morgan starts his new job this week as chief with a target on his back. The selection of the career FBI official to run the 20,000-strong force sends a clear message: BP has a culture problem that needs to be fixed.... Read more»

McCain endorsed by union for border agents

U.S. Sen. John McCain was endorsed by the National Border Patrol Council, the union that represents nearly 16,500 Border Patrol agents, during an event Tuesday in Tucson. McCain is facing a tough reelection battle, fending off challenges from the right in the GOP primary with the prospect of a tough general election opponent in Ann Kirkpatrick. ... Read more»

BP union head, Babeu accuse feds of 'lack of enforcement' at border

Members of the Border Patrol's union and Sheriff Paul Babeu accused the Obama administration of "manipulating data," claiming BP supervisors are ordering agents to release immigrants without documents requiring them to appear in court. A staffer for Babeu blocked a Phoenix reporter from the announcement. ... Read more»

Memory of fatal BP shooting haunts Nogales three years later

Dr. Luis Contreras Sanchez was browsing social media when he heard a rapid burst of gunfire just outside his home. It was a night he would not soon forget. Outside his building in Nogales, Mexico, 16-year-old Jose Antonio Elena Rodriguez was dead on the sidewalk. He had been shot as many as ten times, the majority of the bullets hitting him on the back of his body. The shooter allegedly was Border Patrol Agent Lonnie Swartz.... Read more»

Trump visits border in Texas after BP union backs out

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump landed on time in South Texas on Thursday, even though a Border Patrol union here backed out of hosting him.... Read more»1

Cochise sheriff asks Senate to work with local lawmen to secure border

Local law enforcement must be involved in securing “the rural parts of the Southwest border,” which is still dangerously insecure, Cochise County Sheriff Mark Dannels told a Senate panel Tuesday.... Read more»1

Border Patrol cuts overtime pay for agents

Belt-tightening made necessary by federal spending cuts, as well as pointed questions about the use of hours by federal agents with the Department of Homeland Security have resulted in cuts to the overtime hours of agents working as supervisors or in administrative duties, even as reform legislation languishes in Congress. ... Read more»

County: Migrant kids, families no threat to public health

Questioned about the potential impact of the children and families brought to Tucson by immigration authorities, the director of the Pima County Health Department said they "do not constitute a public health threat."... Read more»

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