FBI: Mexico chased away U.S. agents after shooting

Second killing at the border in two weeks enrages Mexican citizens, underscores divisive immigration debate

Published June 9, 2010 9:50PM (EDT)

Pointing their rifles, Mexican security forces chased away U.S. authorities investigating the shooting of a 15-year-old Mexican by a U.S. Border Patrol agent on the banks of the Rio Grande, the FBI and witnesses told The Associated Press on Wednesday.

The killing of the Mexican by U.S. authorities -- the second in less than two weeks -- has exposed the distrust between the two countries that lies just below the surface, and has enraged Mexicans who see the death of the boy on Mexican soil as an act of murder.

Shortly after the boy was shot, Mexican soldiers arrived at the scene and pointed their guns at the Border Patrol agents across the riverbank while bystanders screamed insults and hurled rocks and firecrackers, FBI spokeswoman Andrea Simmons said. She said the agents were forced to withdraw.

A relative of the dead boy who had been playing with him told the AP that the Mexicans -- who he described as federal police, not soldiers -- pointed their guns only when the Americans waded into the mud in an apparent attempt to cross into Mexico.

The Mexican authorities accused the Americans of trying to recover evidence from Mexican soil and threatened to kill them if they crossed the border, prompting both sides to draw their guns, said the 16-year-old boy who asked not to be further identified for fear of reprisal.

THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP's earlier story is below.

CIUDAD JUAREZ, Mexico (AP) -- A spokeswoman for the FBI tells The Associated Press that Mexican soldiers pointed their rifles and chased away U.S. Border Patrol agents investigating the shooting of a 15-year-old Mexican.

The boy was shot by a Border Patrol agent who says he was defending himself from rock throwers along the nearly dry Rio Grande that divides Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, from El Paso, Texas.

FBI spokeswoman Andrea Simmons said Wednesday that Border Patrol investigators were forced to leave the scene Monday night after soldiers aimed guns at them from across the river.

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Immigration Latin America Mexico