Friday, September 25, 2015

Border Patrol Agent Charged with Second Degree Murder In 2012 Shooting Death of Mexican Teen

Posted By on Fri, Sep 25, 2015 at 8:00 AM

click to enlarge Area in Nogales, Sonora where José Antonio Elena Rodriguez was shot. - MARIA INÉS TARACENA
  • Maria Inés Taracena
  • Area in Nogales, Sonora where José Antonio Elena Rodriguez was shot.

Border Patrol agent Lonnie Swartz has been charged with second degree murder in the 2012 Nogales border shooting 16-year-old José Antonio Elena Rodríguez. 

Witnesses of the shooting say Elena Rodriguez was walking home on the Sonora side of the fence, when he was struck by at least eight bullets from the Arizona side. Border Patrol agents allege someone threw rocks at them, which triggered the shooting. 

Here's part of a write up by the Huffington Post's Roque Planas:
The killing of 16-year-old José Antonio Elena Rodríguez sparked an outcry on the Mexican side of the border in the city of Nogales and cast a spotlight on the Border Patrol’s guidelines for using lethal force.

"The Elena Rodriguez Family is grateful to the DOJ (Department of Justice) for this first step in the pursuit of justice, and remain steadfast in their resolve to seek full transparency from the U.S. Border Patrol on behalf of Jose Antonio," Luis Parra, an attorney for Elena Rodríguez's mother, told The Associated Press.

Swartz’s attorney, Sean Chapman, said he has yet to see the indictment.

“He’s going to plead not guilty and fight the charges, but I really can’t comment beyond that,” Chapman told The Huffington Post.

Lee Gelernt, an attorney with the American Civil Liberties Union who represents Elena Rodríguez’s mother in a separate civil lawsuit, described the indictment as unprecedented.

“We believe it was justified and that it took too long,” Gelernt told HuffPost. “As far as we know, this is the first time there’s been an indictment in a cross-border shooting, so it’s a big deal … It sends an enormous message to the Border Patrol going forward that they cannot engage in these types of actions.”

“But it also has tremendous importance for the family,” Gelernt added. “They’ve been going against this faceless entity in the United States, not knowing if anyone is taking their claims seriously.”

A spokesman for U.S. Customs and Border Protection, the Border Patrol’s parent agency, declined to discuss the charge, saying, “It would be inappropriate for CBP to comment because it is an ongoing investigation.”

Tags: , , , ,


Showing 1-1 of 1

Add a comment

Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-1 of 1

Add a comment

Previously in the Range

More by María Inés Taracena

Today | Mon | Tue | Wed | Thu | Fri | Sat
DO(OM) Yoga

DO(OM) Yoga @ Floor Polish

Sundays, 8-9 p.m.

All of today's events | Staff Picks

Staff Pick

Carnival of Illusion: Magic, Mystery & Oooh La La!

This top-rated illusion show is "Revitalizing Magic" by blending an international travel theme with all the charms… More

@ Scottish Rite Grand Parlour Saturdays. Continues through April 14 160 South Scott Ave

» More Picks

Submit an Event Listing

Popular Content

  1. SXSW 2018: Josh T. Pearson Works with the Chaos of SXSW (The Range: The Tucson Weekly's Daily Dispatch)
  2. Chloe Needs a Home (The Range: The Tucson Weekly's Daily Dispatch)
  3. AZ Republican Legislators Say No To 17 Minutes of Silence (The Range: The Tucson Weekly's Daily Dispatch)
  4. See Through Another's Eyes as You Walk a 'Mile in a Refugee's Shoes' (The Range: The Tucson Weekly's Daily Dispatch)
  5. Tucson's Salvation Army Starts Food Drive to Feed Kids for Summer Program (The Range: The Tucson Weekly's Daily Dispatch)

© 2018 Tucson Weekly | 7225 Mona Lisa Rd. Ste. 125, Tucson AZ 85741 | (520) 797-4384 | Powered by Foundation