Woman dead, 36 arrested after migrants attempt to swim to San Diego border beach

Border Report

SAN DIEGO — The U.S. Customs and Border Protection announced Saturday a woman died and 36 people were arrested after a large group of migrants attempted to enter the U.S. by swimming around the border barrier and into Imperial Beach.

U.S. Border Patrol agents received a report Friday at around 11:38 p.m. of a group of possibly 70 people attempting to illegally swim across the international boundary from Tijuana to Border Field State Park. 

When agents responded to the area, they came across an unresponsive woman believed to be from the group of swimmers, according to Jackie Wasiluk of the CBP. That’s when Border Patrol agents immediately performed CPR on the woman while contacting emergency medical services including San Diego Fire-Rescue Department firefighters and lifeguards.

Although EMS arrived to the scene and resumed medical aid, the unresponsive woman was pronounced deceased by the EMS at around 12:30 a.m.

U.S. Border Patrol, along with Air and Marine Operations, U.S. Coast Guard, SDFD, and California State Parks continued to search the area in efforts to locate any others who may have been in distress.

Border Patrol agents took a total of 36 adult Mexican nationals into custody who had swam around the border barrier, 25 men and 11 women, including 13 people the U.S. Coast Guard rescued from the water, Wasiluk stated in an email to FOX 5. All 36 persons were taken into custody and transported to a nearby Border Patrol station for processing.

“This is yet another example of the ruthless tactics smuggling organizations use to bolster their power and profits.” said Aaron Heitke, San Diego Sector’s chief patrol agent “We will work tirelessly to pursue and bring to justice those responsible for this tragedy.” 

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