Border Crossings Keep Climbing

By: - May 4, 2018 12:00 am

Border Patrol agents apprehend suspected illegal immigrants near Marfa, Texas. Illegal border crossings continued to rise in April, according to the latest U.S. Border Patrol statistics.

U.S. Border Patrol via Twitter

The number of people caught trying to illegally cross the Mexican border ticked up in April, and is now more than triple what it was last year.

U.S. Border Patrol statistics show 50,924 people were stopped in April, the highest number since December 2016 and more than triple the 15,766 in April 2017, when crossings were plummeting in the early months of the Trump administration.

“Last year they were falling,” said Randy Capps, research director at the nonpartisan Migration Policy Institute. “That was the Trump effect, but not this year.”

The Department of Homeland Security called the crossings a “crisis at our Southwest border” last month when March crossings topped 50,000 for the first time since 2014.

Some of the increase is being driven by fears of gang violence in Central America — fears that outweigh concerns about deportation under the Trump administration. This week a caravan of Central Americans began to cross the border at San Diego seeking asylum, prompting Attorney General Jeff Sessions to send judges and assistant U.S. attorneys to the border to process cases.

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Tim Henderson
Tim Henderson

Tim Henderson covers demographics for Stateline. He has been a reporter at the Miami Herald, the Cincinnati Enquirer and the Journal News.