A Border Patrol Agent Will Soon Face an Unwarranted Media Attack

By Michael C. Nicley on March 27, 2014

In a post I wrote on March 8, I lamented the media's mischaracterization of Border Patrol Chief Michael Fisher's use of force memorandum to agency personnel. The national media was positively giddy about the compulsory "limitations" and "restrictions" on the use of deadly force against attackers using "only" rocks in their endeavor to kill a Border Patrol Agent. The media has persisted with their erroneous reporting to such an extent that much of the general public may now believe Border Patrol Agents will not resort to deadly force when faced with a potentially lethal rock assault.

As I wrote in my previous post, Chief Fisher did not expand the historical limitations on the use of deadly force in any way. When attacked with any instrument likely to cause death or great bodily harm, a Border Patrol Agent is authorized to use sufficient force, up to and including deadly force, to neutralize the threat. The horribly inaccurate reporting regarding the Border Patrol's use of force policy will have real consequences.

In the not-too-distant future, a Border Patrol Agent will find it necessary to use deadly force in order to survive a rock assault. The media, having incorrectly convinced themselves and the public that responding to a rock assault with deadly force is prohibited, will publicly crucify the agent. There will be demands for firing and prosecuting the agent who intentionally disobeyed a nonexistent policy that was wholly contrived by media hype. Chief Fisher will be raked over the coals for not providing sufficient oversight to ensure adherence to a policy he never wrote.

The Border Patrol will be wrongly identified as a rogue, out-of-control law enforcement organization in dire need of increased oversight. Illegal alien support groups like the ACLU and La Raza will clamor for congressional hearings and there will be a determined effort to link stalled immigration reform legislation to border violence.

There are some unearned troubles bearing down on the U.S. Border Patrol.