WATCH: CBP Conducts Remote Rescue of Illegal Alien Woman Who Fell From Cliff

Posted: Dec 26, 2020 7:00 PM

U.S Customs and Border Protection’s (CBP) Air and Marine Operations (AMO) agents conducted a remote air rescue of two illegal aliens in the Baboquivari Wilderness Peak area on Tuesday. Footage of the rescue shows AMO agents, along with a U.S. Border Patrol Search, Trauma, and Rescue (BORSTAR) EMT, hoisting the two illegal aliens to safety.

The crew of a Tucson Air Branch UH-60 responded to a 9-11 call of an injured woman who fell some 10 feet from a cliff in the Baboquivari Wilderness Peak area near Tucson, Arizona. The woman was bleeding from her head and suffered numerous abrasions.

After locating the injured woman and another illegal immigrant, a male, the aircrew inserted the BORSTAR EMT and an AMO agent via hoist due to the remote location of the distressed individuals. Once the EMT had the woman stabilized, the two individuals and the aircrew were extracted and transported to a nearby highway where the woman was taken to a local hospital for further evaluation.

Tucson aircrews rescued 43 individuals in fiscal year 2020, according to CBP.

“Our aircrews are the best at what they do,” said Deputy Director, Tucson Air Branch, Hunter Robinson. “They are able to quickly shift from their law enforcement capacity to a search and rescue function, reaching these individuals, saving their lives.”

Border Patrol agents are continually rescuing injured and distressed illegal aliens in the Baboquivari Peak Wilderness area.  

In September, a Tucson Air Branch UH-60 crew conducted two hoist extraction rescues in the Baboquivari Peak Wilderness area during a one-week period. 

The crew responded to a 911 call from a distressed illegal alien and performed two hoist insertions, lowering an AMO Rescue Specialist and a BORTAC team member. The crew then performed three hoist extractions to retrieve the lowered crewmembers and the illegal alien. The rescued individual was transferred to ground agents for processing. 

Just two days earlier, the same crew rescued another distressed illegal alien in the foothills of the Baboquivari Mountains.

"AMO Agents have years of experience in high-stress, dynamic scenarios, with aircrew duties range from hoisting injured persons from dangerous conditions to performing emergency medical treatment in potentially life-threatening situations," said Michael Montgomery, director, Air and Marine Operations at the Tucson Air Branch in a press release. "Our Agents routinely demonstrate the flexibility of Customs and Border Protection mission, which can rapidly evolve from a law enforcement response to a humanitarian rescue."

Despite the risk to their lives, risks that have increased amid the coronavirus pandemic, Border Patrol agents continue to rescue illegal aliens who become lost and in need of assistance in remote areas along the border. Many of the illegal aliens in distress are abandoned by human smugglers.