Tribpedia: Texas-Mexico Border

The Texas-Mexico border makes up 1,254 miles of the 1,900-mile-long U.S.-Mexico border. 

The vast, mostly rural expanse stretches from El Paso in the West to Brownsville in the Southeast and is delineated by the Rio Grande River.

Border communities in Texas are some of the poorest regions of the state and the nation. If Texas ...

U.S. Supreme Court tosses cross-border shooting case back to lower court

Customs and Border Patrol agents constantly patrol wide gravel roads along the border fence. The traffic — which has increased as border enforcement budgets have soared — is another threat to border wildlife, according to scientists and conservationists.
Customs and Border Patrol agents constantly patrol wide gravel roads along the border fence. The traffic — which has increased as border enforcement budgets have soared — is another threat to border wildlife, according to scientists and conservationists.

The nation's highest court on Monday sent a case involving the cross-border shooting death of a Mexican teenager back to the U.S. 5th Circuit Court of Appeals. At issue is whether the teen's family can sue the U.S. border patrol agent who killed him.

Protesters against Senate Bill 4, known as the "sanctuary cities" bill, hold a noon rally at the Texas Capitol on May 16, 2017. Organizers say they're planning a "summer of resistance" against the measure.   
<p>Protesters against Senate Bill 4, known as the "sanctuary cities" bill, hold a noon rally at the Texas Capitol on May 16, 2017.&nbsp;Organizers say they're planning a "summer of resistance" against the measure. &nbsp;&nbsp;</p>

List of local governments planning to fight Texas over "sanctuary" bill growing

Leaders from El Paso County and the cities of Dallas and Austin plan to move forward with resolutions or litigation against Senate Bill 4, the state's controversial immigration law, as soon as this week, according to local officials.

Protesters block the doors to the State Insurance Building, on the Capitol grounds in Austin, in protest of Senate Bill 4 &mdash; known as the "sanctuary cities" bill &mdash; on Monday, May 1, 2017.
<p>Protesters block the doors to the State Insurance Building, on the Capitol grounds in Austin, in protest of Senate Bill 4 &mdash; known as the "sanctuary cities" bill &mdash; on Monday, May 1, 2017.</p>

"Sanctuary cities" bill clears latest hurdle, heads to Abbott for signature

The Texas Senate on Wednesday voted to send to Gov. Greg Abbott a bill that would ban "sanctuary" jurisdictions in Texas and allow police to inquire about the immigration status of people they lawfully detain.

Opponents of Senate Bill 4 &mdash; which would&nbsp;outlaw &ldquo;sanctuary&rdquo; jurisdictions in Texas&nbsp;&mdash; stage a protest at the State Insurance Building in Austin on May 1, 2017.
<p>Opponents of Senate Bill 4 &mdash; which would&nbsp;outlaw &ldquo;sanctuary&rdquo; jurisdictions in Texas&nbsp;&mdash; stage a protest at the State Insurance Building in Austin on May 1, 2017.</p>

Protesters on Texas Capitol grounds charged with trespassing

At least two dozen protesters on the grounds of the Texas Capitol on Monday evening were charged with misdemeanor trespassing, the culmination of a day-long sit-in to protest the "sanctuary" jurisdictions bill moving through the Legislature.

A section of border fence cuts through the Nature Conservancy’s Lennox Foundation Southmost Preserve near Brownsville. Because the land is home to several endangered plant and animal species, the conservancy thought it would be able to force the U.S. Department of Homeland Security to build the fence elsewhere. But “our compelling arguments were not that compelling to the federal government,” said Laura Huffman, head of the Nature Conservancy’s Texas office.
A section of border fence cuts through the Nature Conservancy’s Lennox Foundation Southmost Preserve near Brownsville. Because the land is home to several endangered plant and animal species, the conservancy thought it would be able to force the U.S. Department of Homeland Security to build the fence elsewhere. But “our compelling arguments were not that compelling to the federal government,” said Laura Huffman, head of the Nature Conservancy’s Texas office.

Environmental impacts of the border fence (slideshow)

Scenes from the Rio Grande Valley in far South Texas, where a border barrier went up years ago.

 

Scott Nicol, co-chair of the Sierra Club’s Borderlands Campaign, stands in front of the border fence in Hidalgo in far South Texas. This section, which sits atop a levee, runs between a national wildlife refuge and a local nature center.
Scott Nicol, co-chair of the Sierra Club’s Borderlands Campaign, stands in front of the border fence in Hidalgo in far South Texas. This section, which sits atop a levee, runs between a national wildlife refuge and a local nature center.

Scientists say Trump's border wall would devastate wildlife habitat

At the U.S.-Mexico border, scientists say existing fencing is hurting endangered wildlife and warn that a continuous wall could devastate many species.

Now-President Donald Trump is shown on Jan. 28, 2016, speaking to a group of veterans at Drake University during the 2016 Republican presidential campaign.
Now-President Donald Trump is shown on Jan. 28, 2016, speaking to a group of veterans at Drake University during the 2016 Republican presidential campaign.

In addition to border wall, Trump's executive action targets detention space

The White House announced Wednesday that in addition to moving to build a barrier on the southern border, it will act to build more detention space for undocumented immigrants in the area.

Lead defense attorney Carlos Garcia assists defendant Joel Luna in putting on a tie prior to Luna's murder trial in Brownsville on January 17, 2017.
Lead defense attorney Carlos Garcia assists defendant Joel Luna in putting on a tie prior to Luna's murder trial in Brownsville on January 17, 2017.

Sparring over evidence marks first day of Border Patrol agent's trial

A state judge ruled that a statement Border Patrol Agent Joel Luna voluntarily gave authorities can be used in his murder trial.  Sparring over evidence marked the first day of his trial in South Texas, in a case that has stoked concern about alleged law enforcement corruption on the U.S. side of the border.

A municipal police officer at a crime scene in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico. The municipal police force was recently "purged" under the new chief of police Julien Leyzaola.
A municipal police officer at a crime scene in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico. The municipal police force was recently "purged" under the new chief of police Julien Leyzaola.

Is Ciudad Juárez on the brink of a new gang war?

October was the deadliest month in Ciudad Juárez in nearly three years. Locals are anxious — and hopeful they're not witnessing a resurgence of the brutal drug war that plagued this Mexican border city from 2008 to 2011.

45-year-old Nickolas Mares is described by DPS as a “high-threat criminal,” though he only faced a drug possession charge. He can hardly speak from a stroke and lives with his mother in Rio Grande City.
45-year-old Nickolas Mares is described by DPS as a “high-threat criminal,” though he only faced a drug possession charge. He can hardly speak from a stroke and lives with his mother in Rio Grande City.

Most border arrests by Texas troopers are not for drug smuggling

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DPS has added more troopers to the border under the assumed objective that they're going after drug and human smugglers. But most of their arrests are for drunk driving and misdemeanor drug possession. 

A DPS trooper spots a motorist along Highway 83 in Starr County.
A DPS trooper spots a motorist along Highway 83 in Starr County.

Many border drug smugglers avoid prison

In two key counties, less than a quarter of the “high-threat criminals” arrested by Department of Public Safety troopers for felony drug offenses during the state’s border surge have been sent to prison.

U.S. Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, operating a crane at the Port of Houston Authority on November 1, 2016. The port is ranked first in the country for imports and exports, and second for overall tonnage.
U.S. Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, operating a crane at the Port of Houston Authority on November 1, 2016. The port is ranked first in the country for imports and exports, and second for overall tonnage.

Texas lawmakers hope rhetoric doesn't swamp beneficial trade deals

Trade has become an emotional hot-button issue this presidential election year, and some Texas lawmakers are worried about what that means for the future of the state's trade climate. 

Trump protesters speak with San Antonio police office outside Hyatt Hotel in San Antonio where Republican Presidential nominee Donald Trump was expected to attend a fundraiser on October 11, 2016
Trump protesters speak with San Antonio police office outside Hyatt Hotel in San Antonio where Republican Presidential nominee Donald Trump was expected to attend a fundraiser on October 11, 2016

Can an anti-Trump surge of voters sway Texas?

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Texas is expected to go Republican this year, as it has in every presidential election since 1980. But Democrats have watched a turnout surge wash over the state’s most urban, least white areas.