'Fast and Furious' gun death detailed
By The Associated Press
Published: Tuesday, Feb. 4, 2014, 5:30 p.m.
PHOENIX — A firefight that killed a Border Patrol agent near the Arizona-Mexico border in 2010 erupted as armed men who had sneaked into the country to rob marijuana smugglers walked in a single-file line toward a group of agents, according an account given by prosecutors of the shooting that revealed the government's botched “Fast and Furious” gun-smuggling investigation.
Agents sitting atop a small hill and using night-vision gear could see that rip-off crew members were carrying rifles and waited until the men were close before an agent yelled “police” in Spanish. The gunmen turned toward the agents and started to fire, setting off an exchange of gunfire that killed Agent Brian Terry and wounded acknowledged rip-off crew member Manuel Osorio-Arellanes, prosecutors said.
“I'm hit,” Terry told fellow agents, noting that he couldn't feel his legs, according to court records filed by the agents who were with Terry during the gun fight. Terry lost consciousness and died at the scene from the gunshot.
The account marks the most complete publicly available summary by prosecutors of the Dec. 14, 2010, firefight in a canyon just north of the Arizona border city of Nogales. In the past, federal authorities repeatedly declined to disclose information about Terry's death.
Prosecutors recounted details of the shooting in a court record filed in advance of a sentencing hearing Monday for Osorio-Arellanes, who pleaded guilty to first-degree murder in Terry's death. The filing was accompanied by written accounts from three Border Patrol agents who were with Terry as he died. Prosecutors are seeking a 30-year sentence for Osorio-Arellanes.
Terry's stepmother, Carolyn Terry, said Osorio-Arellanes' upcoming sentencing won't give the family any closure. “We don't know what happened to him out there that night,” she said.
Federal authorities who conducted “Fast and Furious” have faced tough criticism for allowing suspected straw gun buyers for a smuggling ring to walk away from gun shops in Arizona with weapons, rather than arrest them and seize the guns.
Two rifles bought by a gun-smuggling ring that was being monitored through “Fast and Furious” were found at the scene of the firefight.
Show commenting policy
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.
- Wyoming officials to drill at landslide’s crest
- Space station receives Easter cargo delivery
- Navy endorses 24-hour sleep cycle for sailors
- Study of corn waste as fuel source finds gasoline less damaging to atmosphere
- Ruling on Cleveland police chase questioned
- Art from ‘Dick and Jane’ series set for auction
- Postal Service overhaul expected to appeal to Dems
- Seafood study: Up to 32 percent imported to U.S. is caught illegally
- IRS, other agencies award contracts to license plate tracking company
- ‘Patriots’ back Nevada rancher; Reid labels them ‘domestic terrorists’
- SpaceX supply ship makes Easter cargo delivery to space station