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El Centro Border Patrol agents rescue 12 in just 3 days

Nearly 350 undocumented immigrants saved since October

OCOTILLO, Calif. (KYMA, KECY) - It's been a busy week for El Centro Sector Border Patrol agents. They rescued a dozen undocumented immigrants in just the first three days.

It started just before 10 Monday night when dispatch got a call from the Calexico Police Department (CPD) about a group of six lost in the wilderness north of the Mexico border. CPD gave Border Patrol dispatch the group's GPS coordinates, and Border Search Trauma and Rescue (BORSTAR) began the search.

It took BORSTAR about a half-hour to find all six people. None were hurt or in need of medical attention.

Around the same time, the sector's Foreign Operations Branch (FOB) contacted agents about two more travelers lost in the mountains north of the border. BORSTAR was already in the area, and began the search.

Agents located two undocumented immigrants just after midnight Tuesday. They were just 500 feet from the border. Neither needed medical help.

A U.S. Border Patrol rescue beacon

El Centro Sector got another rescue call just after six Wednesday evening. Someone had activated a rescue beacon in the mountainous area north of the border. It took agents less than a half-hour to reach the beacon. They then followed footprints to a 15-year-old boy. The teenager told agents he'd left behind a woman and her two young children.

Agents located a woman, a five-year-old girl, and a three-year-old boy a short time later. They were tired, but not hurt.

In all cases, Border Patrol brought in the rescued individuals for processing.

Since the start of the fiscal year in October, El Centro Sector Border Patrol has successfully rescued 348 undocumented immigrants.

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Lisa Sturgis

Lisa Sturgis returned to KYMA as its Digital Content Director in September of 2019, but she and her family have a long history in the Desert Southwest. Her grandmother first moved to Yuma in the late 1940’s, and Lisa got her first job in TV news at KYMA in 1987.

Reach out to Lisa with story ideas and your digital feedback at

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Arlette Yousif

Arlette Yousif joined KYMA in November 2020 as a Multi Media Journalist. She holds a BA in Journalism with a minor in Film.

You can reach out to Arlette for at

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