Keeping the Peace
POSTED: Friday, September 11, 2009 - 6:30pm
UPDATED: Wednesday, February 17, 2010 - 3:24pm
SIERRA BLANCA--- Texas Governor Rick Perry's decision to beef up security along the border had local law enforcement reacting Friday.
For the deputies at the Hudspeth County Sheriff's Office, the fight to stop illegal smuggling is a daunting task; with few resources to tackle it.
Lt. Robert Wilson, who works special ops., said one such incident came up Thursday.
A woman and her son, deserted by coyotes, were stuck near the Quitman Pass mountains.
The pair were headed to Dallas to be able to provide the 10-year-old boy a prosthetic arm, when the coyotes left them lost in the mountains Monday.
The boy, with only one arm, climbed to the top of the mountain Wednesday night, and used his mother's cell phone to reach help.
Thursday, Hudspeth's Sheriff Arvin West called in Department of Public safety helicopters to help them.
They were able to locate them in 15 minutes.
Even with the choppers, deputies fear they've just been reactive to such problems instead of pro-active.
But Wilson says Gov. Perry's new plan is helping to change that.
"The ranger recons (are) very useful to a rural county... They can come in and set up an area that's a hot spot for smuggling of any type... and free up the Sheriff's Office to do their jobs."
So instead of using deputies to patrol, rangers stake out these areas, conduct investigations and hopefully deter spillover violence.