Mid-October, 2022

Reporting on October 27, 2022, the Nogales-based Kino Border Initiative (KBI) recounted a Mexican migrant’s inability to receive prompt medical care in Border Patrol custody after being bitten by a venomous animal.

As Caleb [name changed to protect privacy] was crossing the desert, a Border Patrol helicopter appeared overhead and he laid down on the ground, only to be stung by a venomous scorpion on his hip. When a BP agent approached him, Caleb told him he had been stung and needed medical attention, as he was having trouble breathing and his throat felt tingly. The agent told him to sit down and be quiet. After being transported to Yuma, Caleb asked again for medical attention and showed an agent his sting, but she told him to wait. He waited in a holding cell from sometime in the afternoon until 3 am, when there was a shift change and the agent coming on duty saw his condition and immediately brought him to the ER to get an anti-venom shot. Over the course of his detention, he had trouble getting the antibiotics that he needed to prevent the sting from getting infected and also lost all his personal belongings that BP had confiscated, despite contacting the Mexican Consulate for assistance getting them returned.

— “October 27 update from KBI” (Nogales: Kino Border Initiative, October 27, 2022).

Sector(s): Tucson

Agency(ies): Border Patrol

Event Type(s): Denial of Medical Care, Non-Return of Belongings

Accountability Status: Unknown

Victim Classification: Mexico, Single Adult