(HRW) – Parents of a 15-year-old Mexican boy, killed seven years ago by a US Border Patrol agent who shot across the border into Mexico, are still waiting to find out whether they are entitled to a day in court. According…
Nearly half a million migrants have been apprehended by U.S. Border Patrol in 2016, while hundreds of thousand of others have been detained and deported en route through Mexico. Within this number is a record-breaking number of Central Americans seeking asylum in what Amnesty International called “the world’s least visible refugee crises.” Many of these asylum seekers have escaped communities torn apart by violence, the drug trade and poverty, but human rights groups report that an alarming number of them are subject to serious danger en route to the border.
A United States Border Patrol Agent who shot an unarmed Mexican child in the back across the border should not escape justice if the shooting was unlawful, Human Rights Watch said in a friend-of-the-court brief.
In the brief, filed in a federal appeals court on Friday, Human Rights Watch says international standards require law enforcement officers to use force only when it is necessary and proportionate. The law firm Constantine Cannon LLP served as counsel on the brief.
“On the facts in the complaint, this killing unambiguously violates international standards for the use of force by law enforcement officers,” said Sarah Poppy Alexander, an associate with Constantine Cannon. “An unarmed child standing on a public street would have posed no immediate threat to Agent Swartz, who was behind a border fence 40 to 50 feet above street level.”