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Update: Crossing the line

An update of last week’s report about possible abuses by U.S. border agents. There have been at least 8 killings along the U.S./Mexico border in the past two years.

Our report focused on the death of one illegal immigrant whose beating and tasing by border agents was captured on videotape: Anastasio Hernandez Rojas, a 42-year-old Mexican was illegally crossing over the border when he was caught by U.S. border patrol. Eyewitness video caught the sounds of Hernandez Rojas pleading for help while he was, according to witness, being beaten by border agents. And this never-before-seen video of the incident shows him being tasered repeatedly, while surrounded by more than a dozen officers.

It turned out that at the time of the tasing Hernandez Rojas was handcuffed and according to witnesses, not resisting.

Since our broadcast aired, the story has received national attention: This past Monday, human rights advocates and Hernandez Rojas’s family held a press conference in San Diego demanding justice and a federal investigation into the incident. And a national online Latino advocacy group, presente.org, has been circulating a petition addressed to Attorney General Eric Holder demanding that the justice department investigate the incident immediately. The petition has more than 31,000 signatures.

Democratic Congressman Raul Grijalva is a member of the Hispanic caucus and represents a district in Arizona that shares a 300-mile border with Mexico. Grijalva tells us that members of congress have, in the past, inquired about the case of Hernandez Rojas, but have heard nothing from the justice department.

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