Published November 26, 2012
The fatal shooting of a 16-year-old boy in Nogales, Mexico, by the U.S. Border Patrol has prompted angry protests in Mexico. Many are questioning the Border Patrol's right to shoot to kill anyone who throws rocks at agents, even children. The Border Patrol says agents must be allowed to protect themselves because border crossers and drug smugglers alike use rock throwers to distract or harass agents, and some agents have been seriously hurt by rocks.
At the same time, at least 16 people have been killed by border agents along the U.S.-Mexico border in the past three years. Homeland Security officials are reviewing the Border Patrol's policy now, but it is unclear if changes will be made. The Mexican government, for its part, is pushing the U.S. to use nonlethal force.