El Paso residents on edge over migrant surge
(NewsNation) — There has been an overwhelming influx of migrants crossing over the border into El Paso, Texas, and just over 5,700 migrants remained in Border Patrol custody Wednesday morning, according to the city’s dashboard.
However, El Paso residents told NewsNation that they aren’t too worried about self-surrendering migrants, but rather concerned about migrants who try to evade the law.
The U.S. Border Patrol’s acting El Paso Sector Chief Peter Jaquez said there have been, on average, about 2,400 daily migrant encounters involving people crossing into the area over the past weekend.
Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas visited El Paso on Tuesday to assess the situation.
During his visit, Mayorkas said the administration is talking with the Mexican government but declined to go into detail, the El Paso Times reported.
El Paso residents living in the area told NewsNation they’re overwhelmed as some migrants are coming onto their properties.
“This has never happened before. Never. I feel very unsafe and not secure at all here,” said resident Carmen Wilburn.
Wilburn cares for her 86-year-old father in their El Paso home. She said she often sees undocumented migrants jumping the fence and running through her and her neighbors’ yards.
“They can hide in the bushes, by the bushes on the side of our house, and so I don’t even want my granddaughter to stay here. It’s scary,” Wilburn said.
Josie Martinez, another resident who lives down the street, said two men who were running through the neighborhood stopped and pleaded with her for a ride.
“They came and they passed, they stopped me, I was getting in my car and they asked me if I could please give them a ride to a motel or somewhere and I told them I’m sorry, I can’t,” Martinez said.
There are hundreds of migrants camping in the streets of El Paso after being released from Border Patrol. They are not trying to evade, but rather they are trying to continue their journey.
Akalena Salyah, a migrant from Nicaragua, said she is trying to get to Wisconsin to be with her daughter.
“We don’t have a house in Nicaragua. We lost our house. So my daughter came to this country looking for work and to buy a house,” Salyah said.
While there hasn’t been an uptick in crime in El Paso, there was a robbery targeting four migrants at a bus station on Sunday, NewsNation affiliate KTSM reported.
DHS sources confirmed more than 73,000 migrants successfully evaded law enforcement along the border last month, Bradley reported.
As migrants continue to cross into the El Paso Sector from Juarez, contingency plans have been put in place to start processing migrants at ports of entry when Title 42 ends Dec. 21, Border Patrol sources said.