Note: young Ramses was fleeing to Mexico because he have been caught
with a load of dope.
As for the rocks, next time down on the border get a look at some of
the BP vehicles. BTW, rocks have been lethal since biblical times.
One year later, deadly shooting still under federal investigation
Ramses Barron Torres died from a gunshot wound on Jan. 5, 2011.
Posted: Friday, January 6, 2012 8:51 am |
Updated: 10:20 am, Fri Jan 6, 2012.
One year later, deadly shooting still under federal investigation By
Nogales International Nogales International | 0 comments
In the early morning hours of Jan. 5, 2011, a 17-year-old male
suffering from a gunshot wound was dropped off in front of the
Hospital General in Nogales, Sonora. At approximately 3 a.m., he was
It was soon revealed that the victim, Ramses Barron Torres of the
city's borderfront Buenos Aires neighborhood, had been shot by a U.S.
Border Patrol agent patrolling in an area below the Hudgins Street
turnaround on the east side of Nogales, Ariz.
Citing reports from witnesses, Sonoran officials said Barron Torres
had been climbing the border fence as he fled back into Mexico when
the agent shot him. However, a youth who claimed to have witnessed
the shooting told Radio XENY that Barron Torres was standing on the
Mexican side of the fence when he was shot. The FBI, which
investigated the shooting, said Border Patrol agents were attempting
to arrest suspected drug smugglers near the fence when bystanders
began throwing rocks at them. At that point, an agent fired at one of
One year later, the public is no closer to knowing exactly what
happened that night at the border fence. The FBI has since completed
its investigation, but referred all questions to the U.S. Attorney's
Office, where spokesman Manuel Tarango this week said the shooting
remained "an open matter" and therefore could not be discussed.
Other border-related shooting cases in the local area have yielded
similarly opaque federal investigations.
Last May, the U.S. Attorney's Office announced that it had indicted
34-year-old Mexican national Manuel Osorio-Arellanes for the second-
degree murder of Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry near Rio Rico on
Dec. 14, 2010. However, the names of Osorio-Arellanes' co-defendants
- including the alleged triggerman - were blacked out on the
indictment, and a federal judge quickly sealed the case from public
On Nov. 16, 2010 a Border Patrol agent patrolling on horseback near
Walker Canyon west of Nogales shot a 30-year-old Sonora man in the
stomach after the man allegedly threatened him with a rock. The man,
who survived, told a lawyer that the agent had knocked him to the
ground with his horse before shooting him in the abdomen and
threatening to shoot him again in the head.
Tarango, the U.S. Attorney's Office spokesman, said the Walker Canyon
shooting also remains an open case.
Jim Calle, a lawyer who represents Tucson Sector Border Patrol agents
in the Local 2544 union, said the lack of information provided by
prosecutors in these types of cases is typical.
"Any time it goes to the U.S. Attorney's Office, I think it's fair to
say that it kind of becomes a black hole," said Calle, who said
prosecutors are often just as unwilling to share information with the
parties involved as with the public.
As for the slow pace of federal investigations, Calle noted the heavy
workload of federal prosecutors, and the potential need for a case to
be reviewed both at a local level and at the Department of Justice
Lack of closure
The long wait and lack of information can be difficult for victims'
families. Barron Torres' relatives could not immediately be reached
for comment, but Terry's family has expressed frustration with the
investigation into that murder - especially the lack of transparency
regarding weapons found at Terry's murder scene that were linked to a
botched ATF operation called Fast and Furious.
The lack of closure is also hard on Border Patrol agents who are
involved in deadly shooting cases, Calle said.
"It's traumatic for the agent, both in terms of the fact that they
took a life, but also because they understand that they are under
investigation, and that there's some chance that they could be
charged with some sort of offense," he said.
"I'm frequently hearing from agents who are asking me for updates,
but I have nothing to tell them, because the U.S. Attorney is
typically not going to tell me what the status of the case is."
Following the Barron Torres shooting last January, the Border Patrol,
citing agency policy, said the agent involved had been placed on
temporary administrative leave. With the U.S. Attorney's
investigation still open one year later, the NI asked if the agent
was still on leave or back in the field.
Mario Escalante, a spokesman for the Border Patrol's Tucson Sector,
said he could not comment due to the pending investigation.