USBP intercepts human smuggler’s flight

JAMUL — A human smuggler attempted to flee United States Border Patrol (USBP) agents Tuesday night, February 23, and struck civilian and law enforcement vehicles during his erratic flight, causing seven people to be treated at area hospitals, according to a press release.

The incident began at approximately 9:30 p.m. on Tuesday, when a 24-year-old male United States citizen in a Chevy Tahoe approached the Highway 94 checkpoint in East County San Diego.  In the front passenger seat was a 17-year-old male.

Before agents could make contact with the driver, he sped away from the checkpoint at a high rate of speed. Agents pursued the SUV until the driver came to an abrupt stop on Highway 94 near Lyons Valley Road. As agents approached the vehicle, the driver sped off again at a high rate of speed, colliding with a USBP vehicle.

Driving westbound on Highway 94, the driver struck two passing civilian vehicles ultimately incapacitating the Tahoe. Inside the fleeing vehicle were 10 Mexican nationals who were illegally present in the US.

The driver, juvenile passenger, one undocumented migrant, and four Border Patrol agents were injured during the pursuit and taken to area hospitals where they were treated for minor injuries, and later released from the hospital. The vehicle was seized, and the driver will remain in federal custody pending multiple criminal charges.

To prevent the illicit smuggling of humans, drugs, and other contraband, the US Border Patrol maintains a high level of vigilance on corridors of egress away from the Nation’s borders.  To report suspicious activity to the US Border Patrol, contact San Diego Sector at (619) 498-9900. 

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