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Three bodies found in the span of three days in Brooks County

Three bodies found in the span of three days in Brooks County

The most recent discovery of three bodies or remains bring the number of migrant bodies recovered in Brooks County to 47.

"That's no uncommon. There are times where we gather maybe 5 within 3 days," said Brooks County Sheriff Benny Martinez.

In one case, the incident report shows that a deceased female was given pills by her 'guide' when she was feeling sick. Shortly after taking them, she passed out. Sheriff Martinez says migrants are provided energy-type pills that only make their dehydration more severe.

"At that stage, when you're just pretty much totally dehydrated, those pills are not going to benefit you at all. You actually need water," said Sheriff Martinez.

Lack of water is just one risk, making the trip extremely dangerous and adding to the risk.

"It's very sandy. It's a hard terrain. Very deceitful because you can't see it with the naked eye, you actually have to walk and once you start walking it, you feel it and the journey is not easy," said Sheriff Martinez.

In 2016, 61 migrant bodies were discovered in Brooks County. In 2017, there were 52. So far this year, 47 bodies were recovered. Martinez credits the decline to more federal and local resources at the border.

"We're actually declining every single year because of the resources that have been applied," said Sheriff Martinez.

However, south of Brooks County, the migrant death rate is up 52 percent and those migrants are dying of different causes.

"Our deaths are more attributed to them not being able to swim across the Rio Grand river," said Hidalgo County Sheriff Eddie Guerra.

Sheriff Guerra says more often, they are finding migrants who die from drowning rather than dehydration.

"They don't know how to swim or their smuggler has a raft that it's obviously not capable of holding that many people and they fall off the raft, can't swim and they drown," said Guerra.


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