DIMMIT COUNTY, Texas - A Border Patrol police chase in south Texas ended in a deadly crash on Sunday, killing at least five undocumented immigrants about 50 miles from the Mexico border.
Police say an SUV carrying over a dozen people was part of a smuggling event, which caused the U.S. Border Patrol to pursue it, and later, a Dimmit County Sheriff's Deputy joined the chase on state Highway 85 about 90 miles southwest of San Antonio.
Officials said the Chevy Suburban packed with people crashed, leading to multiple injuries and fatalities.
At least four people were killed when 12 undocumented immigrants were thrown from the vehicle.
Officials say a fifth passenger later died at a San Antonio hospital.
Authorities think the driver and a passenger are U.S. citizens who will likely face state and federal charges.
Dimmit County Sheriff Marion Boyd indicates his deputies are often chasing suspects accused of human smuggling and drug trafficking.
"It's surely busy. We need assets down here. We have a problem," Boyd said. "I think we need more boots on the ground. We need more patrol. We need — I think we need a wall in my opinion."
Yet, critics say a border wall is just not practical or even possible in some of the challenging terrain along the border.
"And I know in some places, a wall may not be — if it can be built, I think it needs to be built," the sheriff added. "But along with that, I think there needs to be cameras, there needs to be sensors, there needs to be other things integrated to be able to protect our borders."
As the border security debate rages on, this deadly crash shows a human toll being taken on Texas roadways.