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Offering Assistance to Border Patrol Agent

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  • Offering Assistance to Border Patrol Agent

    I live in southern Arizona and while I'm sure this is a VERY common scenario it was the first time I observed it.

    I was driving on I-19 and about a quarter mile in front of me saw a Border Patrol SUV that had been parked behind a bush pull out onto the highway quickly and proceed to immediately turn on his lights to pull over a small sedan. The sedan seemed to pull over to the right shoulder normally but as soon as it came to a stop all 4 doors opened and 4 Hispanic males jumped out and started running into the underbrush separating the highway from a neighborhood. The BP agent immediately got out of his vehicle and reached into the sedan... I suspect the driver hadn't put it into Park and he was making sure it wouldn't roll into traffic. As I passed it looked like he was beginning to pursue on foot (he was alone).

    Only about a mile down the road did I start to wonder if I should have pulled over and offered assistance to the BP agent. I'm not a LEO, just a middle aged engineer, and I wasn't armed so I'm not sure exactly what assistance I'd have been able to provide. Perhaps as simple as keeping an eye on his and their vehicles in case they circled back and attempted to leave.

    What I'm wondering is what should I do in the future? Just mind my own business and keep driving or would most officers prefer to be offered assistance? I suspect any backup for him was only minutes away, but perhaps I could have helped somehow. On the other hand, the agent was likely in a high-stress situation and seeing another unidentified vehicle pull up and a person get out might be a situation that would just make things worse.

    I'd be interested in hearing thoughts from other LEO's on the subject, but especially from BP agents... do you have official guidelines on the subject?

  • #2
    Guideline? If you see the agent getting his butt whopped on the side of the road, you are more than welcome to help him. Other than that, it is an enforcement action which you are not trained to accomplish, and it would be safer for you to move along.
    "You don't want the truth because, deep down in places you don't talk about at parties, you want me on that wall, you need me on that wall... I have neither the time, nor the inclination to explain myself to a man who rises and sleeps under the blanket of the very freedom that I provide, and then questions the manner in which I provide it."

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    • #3
      For a non-LEO in that situation, call 9-1-1 on your cell and keep going. If he's getting jumped in a fight, then by all means stop and help out.
      "People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf." - Orwell

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      • #4
        I fully agree with the two previous replies.

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        • #5
          Ok, good to know. Had he been being attacked I'd like to think I'd have the presense of mind to pull over and help (especially if I was armed), but he didn't seem to be threatened at the moment. I've seen a single BP agent round up very large groups of illegals before so I gotta assume he's got the training to handle the situation.

          Thanks for the advice.

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          • #6
            as a border patrol agent i would love the extra help, but its better if u just keep going. running people down is fun, but can be very dangerous. with a small bailout of only four people it shouldnt take that long to track them down on foot. plus when a bailout goes out over the air you can bet that there are agents coming from everywhere trying to get in on the fun. i love a good bailout. too bad we have to secure the car first.

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