Share This Page

Mexico arrests 2 in agents' shooting

| Wednesday, Oct. 3, 2012, 8:28 p.m.

PHOENIX — Mexican troops arrested two men on Wednesday suspected of involvement in the killing of a Border Patrol agent fatally shot in Arizona while responding to a tripped ground sensor, Mexican security officials said.

The agent who died was among three who were patrolling on foot about 5 miles north of the international border when gunfire erupted well before daybreak on Tuesday. A second agent was wounded while the third, a woman, was unharmed. The wounded agent was shot in the ankle and buttocks and released from the hospital on Wednesday after undergoing surgery.

The agents involved in the incident had been patrolling in an area near the border town of Naco, well-known as a corridor for smuggling, and the Cochise County Sheriff's department has said that tracks were found heading south after the shooting.

The two suspects detained in Mexico were arrested in a Mexican military operation in the city of Agua Prieta, in Mexico's northern Sonora state, a few miles from the spot where Nicholas Ivie, 30, was killed, a Mexican Army officer, who declined to be named, told Reuters.

A Mexican police official in Naco, across the border from the Arizona town of the same name, confirmed the arrests, which occurred in the early hours of Wednesday.

The killing marked the fourth death of a Border Patrol agent in a violent confrontation in Arizona in less than two years and reignited concerns about border security in a state that is already at the forefront of the national immigration debate.

The violence drew sharp words from Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer, a vocal foe of President Obama's administration on immigration. She said it should lead to anger over “the federal failure and political stalemate that has left our border unsecured and our Border Patrol in harm's way.” Authorities on the United States side of the border combed rugged terrain looking for clues into the shooting near Naco, which remains a smuggling corridor despite the construction of a tall, steel fence along the border.

“We're still out there collecting evidence,” said Brenda Nath, a Federal Bureau of Investigation spokeswoman in Phoenix, declining to say what had been found so far.

Cochise County Sheriff's spokeswoman Carol Capas could not immediately comment on the arrests in Mexico, saying that she had not received any information about them. Nath also declined to comment on word of the arrests.

Ivie, a border agent since 2008, was found dead at the scene.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.