Last night near Rio Rico, Border Patrol agent Brian A. Terry was shot and killed after confronting a group of suspected bandits in a remote area northwest of Nogales. Here's the story we have up now on Starnet:
The statements from politicians and other organizations are rolling in. Here's a sampling:
Department of Homeland Security secretary Janet Napolitano:
“The fatal shooting of Border Patrol Agent Brian A. Terry last night is an unconscionable act of violence against the men and women of the Border Patrol and all those who serve and defend our country.
Agent Terry was killed in the line of duty while confronting several suspects near Rio Rico, Ariz. It is a stark reminder of the very real dangers our men and women on the frontlines confront every day as they protect our communities and the American people.
We are working with other federal, state and local authorities to ensure those responsible for this horrendous act are held responsible. We will leave no stone unturned as we seek justice for the perpetrators.
I want to extend my deepest condolences to Agent Terry’s family at this difficult time. We will honor his memory by remaining resolute and committed to the serious task of securing our nation’s borders. I ask that all of us keep Agent Terry and his family in our prayers.”
Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer:
“The entire State of Arizona is shocked and saddened by the shooting death of Border Patrol Agent Brian A. Terry, killed in the line of duty while serving near Rio Rico, Arizona. Agent Terry was a native of Detroit, Michigan, and is survived by his parents, a brother and two sisters.
“Our prayers are with his family, as well as all Border Patrol Agents and their families. Law enforcement agencies continue to investigate and attempt to bring to justice those who are responsible for this heinous crime. Meanwhile, I have ordered state flags to be flown at half staff in tribute to Agent Terry. Although we needed no reminder of the ever increasing dangers along our southern border, this tragedy serves as stark notice that the threats facing all who serve in protecting our state and nation are real, and are increasing on a daily basis.
“We need to pray for all those in uniform who perform duties that allow us to live in a safe and secure land. We must never become insensitive to the risks and sacrifices made by men and women who help ensure our freedom and liberty whether they serve in Iraq, Afghanistan, along our international borders, our local communities, our correctional facilities, or anywhere in which dangers and difficulties are unpredictable but real.”
Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz.:
“My thoughts and prayers are with the friends and family of Agent Brian Terry after yesterday’s tragic shooting near Rio Rico, Arizona. This event is yet another reminder of the dangers the men and women of the Border Patrol face every day as they put their lives on the line to protect the American people. The increased violence in the border region demands that Congress provide the necessary resources and personnel to ensure the safety of all Americans, especially border patrol agents stationed on the border, and fulfill the Federal government’s responsibility to secure our border.”
Rep. Raul Grijalva, D-Ariz.:
“One can never say enough about the work done by Border Patrol agents who protect our state and the entire nation,” Grijalva said. “Agent Terry’s dedication to his country, and the ultimate sacrifice he made to keep it safe, will not be forgotten. My thoughts are with him today, and I offer my condolences to his family and co-workers on their loss.”
Grijalva urged parties on both sides of the border to work together to continue the downward trend in violence.
Neither we nor our neighbors want to see the border region become more dangerous, either for civilians or the brave men and women who protect them,” Grijalva said. “This crime should not deter the many peaceful efforts underway to improve the quality of life for people on both sides of the border.”
Sen. Jon Kyl, R-Ariz.:
“I am deeply saddened that Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry was shot and killed last night. I extend my deepest condolences to his family, friends and colleagues, and I honor his service and sacrifice in defense of our nation. Our nation is fortunate to have men and women in law enforcement who are willing to protect us at great danger to themselves.
“This act of violence is yet another upsetting reminder of the dangers along the southern border. The federal government must do more to secure the border and prevent future tragedies.”
Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, D-Ariz.:
“I am deeply saddened by the senseless murder of Agent Brian Terry, who was killed in the line of duty while protecting our nation’s borders.
This is a tragedy that deserves nothing less than the swiftest and strongest response. It is a stark reminder that our borders are not yet secure. The full efforts of federal, state and local law enforcement agencies are focused on bringing to justice all those involved.
What additional tragedies must Southern Arizonans endure before my colleagues in Congress and the Obama administration address this crisis with the full weight of our resources? We must act and we must act now.
The deployment of the National Guard must be extended. Additional Border Patrol agents must be dispatched to the border. And we must make smarter decisions about how technology can assist in meeting this vast challenge.
While boots on the ground are critical, they are not enough. All those responsible for securing our border must be fully equipped with the resources they need to get the job done – forward operating bases, unmanned aerial systems and electronic surveillance.
While there have been some small measures of progress in securing the border, Agent Terry’s murder and the still-unsolved slaying of rancher Robert Krentz on his land in Cochise County in March are painful reminders that much more remains to be done.
Drugs and violence along the border continue to pose significant challenges for our nation. The Tucson Sector of the Border Patrol, to which Agent Terry was assigned, must be the focus for national enforcement efforts. It is responsible for almost 50 percent of the drug seizures by the entire Border Patrol nationwide.
Mexico is a nation at war. Battles between drug cartels and the government have led to the killing of more than 28,000 people in Mexico in the last four years since President Felipé Calderon declared war on the drugs cartels. That drug violence has come across our border and directly impacted our way of life.
We must not relent in our efforts to make Southern Arizona safe. Ranchers and other residents must be able to live on their land and in their homes and work in their businesses without fear. Law enforcement officers protecting our citizens must not be threatened by vicious criminals who enter our country illegally.
I salute the resolute work of the brave men and women of the Border Patrol and the other agencies that work every day to protect our borders. And I offer my heartfelt condolences to the Terry family for their profound personal loss. Our commitment to them must be evident in our determination to bring to justice every person involved in this horrific crime.”
Arizona Cattlemen’s Association:
“Each day a special group of men and women put their lives on the line for the safety and security of this country. The agents of the United States Border Patrol are normally rancher’s first responders and usually the only law enforcement on our ranches across the Southern Arizona Border.
Today we are deeply saddened by the loss of Agent Brian Terry, a patrol officer from the Nogales Border Patrol Station. We are thankful for his dedicated service to protecting the United States of America.
Our thoughts and prayers are with the Terry family. The Arizona Cattlemen’s Association knows what it is like to lose one of your own and we realize the support that is necessary to get the family through this difficult time. We are prepared to provide support, in any way possible that is needed for Agent Terry's family.
God bless the men and women of the United State Border Patrol.”
From the Natural Resources Committee Republicans:
“The U.S. Customs and Border Protection announced today that Border Patrol Agent Brian A. Terry was shot and killed Tuesday night by bandits near Rio Rico, Arizona. Sources have confirmed that the shooting occurred on federal lands in the Coronado National Forest.
This is the latest violent crime to occur on federal areas along the U.S. border whereenvironmental policies, enforced by Department of the Interior (DOI) and Department of Agriculture (USDA) land managers, are hindering Border Patrol’s ability to do their job. As a result, our federal lands have become a highway open to criminals, drugs smugglers, human traffickers and potentially terrorists – leading to escalated violence and severe destruction of the environment.
To address these concerns, House Republicans introduced legislation (H.R. 5016) to ensure that DOI and USDA do not restrict or impede Border Patrol from having operational control of the border. This would give Border Patrol both the authority and access to effectively monitor our federal lands on the border.”