Two Mexican nationals pleaded guilty on Thursday to assaulting a Border Patrol agent in Texas, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said.
According to the U.S. Attorney’s Office, District of New Mexico, Jose Maria Reyes-Fuentes, 23, and his brother Juventino Darinel Reyes-Fuentes, 29, both Mexican nationals, had struck a Border Patrol Agent from the Santa Teresa Patrol Station who attempted to arrest them on Aug. 20, 2023.
Juventino Darinel and Jose Maria will remain in custody pending sentencing, which has not been scheduled.
They face up to eight years in prison.
Alexander M.M. Uballez, United States Attorney for the District of New Mexico, and Raul Bujanda, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Albuquerque Field Office, said the altercation happened when a Border Patrol agent began pursuing a group of five to seven migrants who were riding on an all-terrain vehicle.
“After a brief search, the agent located Juventino Darinel hiding in a bush. The agent pulled Juventino Darniel out of the bush and began to handcuff him,” the Attorney’s Office said. “After the agent had placed the first handcuff on, but before the agent had completed securing him, Juventino Darinel began to resist the agent. During the ensuing struggle, Juventino Darinel shouted, at which time Jose Maria rose up approximately 20 yards away and ran towards the agent with a stick.”
“The agent disengaged from Juventino Darinel, drew his duty weapon, and commanded Jose Maria to stop in Spanish. Juventino Darinel then tackled the agent and climbed on top of him. While he was on the ground, Jose Maria made contact with the agent during the altercation. The agent felt Juventino Darinel reach for his weapon and commanded him to stop in Spanish again. The agent then fired his weapon at Juventino Darniel’s leg. The firearm malfunctioned and the agent lost control of the weapon.”
The two then disengaged from the agent and drove into the desert.
Other agents were able to continue to track the ATV, ultimately locating it at the bottom of a mesa. Juventino Darinel and Jose Maria were spotted by a Border Patrol helicopter and were subsequently arrested.
The Las Cruces Resident Agency of the Federal Bureau of Investigation looked into this case. The U.S. Border Patrol also assisted.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Matthew Ramirez is prosecuting the case.
The Santa Teresa Patrol Station is located just west of El Paso, Texas, which is immediately across the U.S.-Mexico border from Ciudad Juárez.