Skip to comments.Border agents' release will not wipe away their crime*(Barf Alert)*
Posted on 01/25/2009 11:37:59 PM PST by Cyropaedia
Ruben Navarrette Jr.: Border agents' release will not wipe away their crime
By Ruben Navarrette Jr. Posted: 01/25/2009 12:00:00 AM PST
I was glad to see that George W. Bush commuted the prison sentences of former Border Patrol agents Ignacio Ramos and Jose Alonso Compean.
And frankly, I was a bit surprised I was glad.
I never had much sympathy for Ramos or Compean, disgraced law enforcement officers who were convicted of shooting a Mexican drug smuggler and then lying about it. From studying the facts, hearing the arguments of the agents' supporters, and interviewing U.S. Attorney Johnny Sutton, whose office tried the case, I'm convinced the pair broke the law and that they were justly convicted and sentenced. Ramos received 11 years and Compean got 12. Both will be released March 20. Bush was also convinced that the men were guilty. That's why he didn't pardon them.
Meanwhile, those who want to defend the agents have to ignore the law and several inconvenient facts. Ramos and Compean said in media interviews that the smuggler, Osvaldo Aldrete-Davila, had a gun, but they never mentioned the weapon in their official reports or to fellow agents who arrived on the scene; Compean fired off 14 rounds from an elevated position, which would have left him vulnerable if, in fact, Aldrete-Davila had a gun; and the jury heard from Ramos, Compean and Aldrete-Davila and found the drug smuggler more believable than the agents.
In a stunning display of situational ethics, Ramos and Compean became instant superheroes to anti-immigration activists.
(Excerpt) Read more at mercurynews.com ...
Woops, should be “serving as a mouthpiece”. ;^)
Did the agents lie about what happened or not?
P.S. I’m just asking, not being snide. Thanks
Idiot journalist dude can believe whatever he wants. Command of the high ground has been taught before Christ graced the Earth.
Give me ammo, a sighted arm, and high ground spot and I'll be happy to defend any place on God's green Earth.
Anyone know if this descrition of the event is accurate?
The incident resulting in both Ramos’ and Compean’s incarceration occurred near the unincorporated Fabens settlement in El Paso County, Texas, on Feb. 17, 2005. On that day, the two men were patrolling the border when they stopped a van containing several hundred pounds of marijuana. The alleged driver of the van, Osvaldo Aldrete Dávila, jumped out of the vehicle and ran away, during which time both Ramos and Compean drew their weapons and shot at Dávila a total of 15 times. They later claimed they thought he was armed. Compean’s shots missed; however Ramos managed to shoot Dávila in the buttocks before he crossed over into Mexico.
Following the incident, Ramos and Compean filed a false investigative report, disposed of their shell casings, and lied to their supervisor.
Ramos testified that when was walking back to the group after the smuggler escaped back into Mexico that he heard the group ( that included the supervisor) talking about "the gunshots". Ramos presumed that the Supervisor had been made aware of the shots being fired by at least one of the other agents.
Now, I believe Ramos because anywhere from 8 to 11 .40 caliber rounds went off and that makes a hell of a lot of noise. Also, one of the other agents that reportedly yelled out the word "shots" when he arrived at the scene while Compean and Ramos were shooting at and then chasing Aldrete Davila.
I can't believe that the supervisor arrives at the scene, immeadiately asks what is going on, and nobody says a word about a single shot being fired...? Sorry, I just don't buy that. I think as some point, the FOS was made a ware of the fact that the agent(s) had discharged their sidearms, but decided to through them under the bus (to save himself) when the DHS started investigating the incident. He, like the agents, figured that the smuggler had escaped back into Mexico, so why should have to write out all that paperwork and then process it...? They were probably never going to see him again, anyway.
Compean claimed that it was the first time he had ever fired his gun in the field. Given what a poor shot he was, I believe him.
That's sort of what I was thinking....
Those two border agents can live next door to me anytime.
So if you were just involved in shooting 15 bullets at someone, you wouldn't discuss it with your supervisor, you'd just assume he heard?
I agree these guys should never have gotten the sentence they got, but is that the kind of operational behavior you want with people who discharge weapons while guarding our borders?
What about this part from the article I posted: "Following the incident, Ramos and Compean filed a false investigative report, disposed of their shell casings, and lied to their supervisor."
Anyone know if this is an accurate representation of the facts?
If an agent just discharged all of these bullets, he wouldn't want to talk about it with his supervisor personally, and not just think "Oh, well, he heard, if he has any questions he'll ask"? Over the hours, days, and weeks that followed, he wouldn't want to talk about it one-on-one--he just unloads on someone and can't be bothered with paperwork...and doesn't talk about it with his supe? Is that how we want our government agents working?
Ruben believes that Mexican narcotics traffickers who sneak into the US for an hour to drop off a thousand pounds of narcotics are "immigrants". It's an interesting and very telling slip up on his part. Ruben isn't pro-immigrant as much as he is pro-crime.
If the smuggler was a US citizen escaping to Mexico, instead of a Mexican National, is there anyone who would change their opinion in this case? Ruben might have a different opinion but I doubt any Ramos and Compean supporters would hold a different opinion.
Navarrette's first book, "A Darker Shade of Crimson: Odyssey of a Harvard Chicano
We are just glad they are getting out. End of story. It was an injustice that they were sentenced like this. You can debate until the cows come home, but common sense (which seems to be lacking in so many things these days)simply dictates that a minor punishment was required for a minor infraction. Geez!
The two agents did not file "false" reports; no report related to the shootings was filed in the first place. Ramos and Compean have been consistent in their versions of the events involved. Two other agents were fired because they repeatedly changed their version of events to investigators ( in other words, they lied).
Sutton needed the FOS to successfully prosecute R & C. The supervisor came out of this mess with a promotion.
The total number of shots was less than 15, BTW.
"Probably"? I'm sorry, I don't understand why the two agents didn't step right up and make full reports. This "well, they figured everyone knew already" thing is truly bizarre--you are involved in a shooting and in this day and age of lawsuits you just shrug and decide "Well, I'm sure they'll ask if they have any questions."
Police officers can go through their careers not discharging their guns ever. These two fired on and struck a suspect, and figure they'll just say nothing unless asked?
That doesn't pass muster.
The two agents did not file "false" reports; no report related to the shootings was filed in the first place.
These two didn't feel the need to see if they should, you know, file a report after shooting at someone?
Ramos and Compean have been consistent in their versions of the events involved. Two other agents were fired because they repeatedly changed their version of events to investigators ( in other words, they lied).
If someone could direct me to their versions, I'd appreciate it.
Sutton needed the FOS to successfully prosecute R & C. The supervisor came out of this mess with a promotion. The total number of shots was less than 15, BTW.
What was the total?
I don't understand the attitude. You may be just glad they're getting out. I don't just take the media's word for something like this--I like to know the facts. The cavalier attitude of some about the facts is rather shocking.
This has been often times presented by conservative elements of the media as a clearcut miscarriage of justice however I have always been suspect that there had to be more to it than that. Clearly these Border Patrol Officers operated in a less than stellar manner by not documenting extraordinary activity beyond that I’m not sure what to think. The profile of the suspect certainly suggests that a shot in the azz was/is well deserved.
Left or Right biased media, I’d like the truth.
Anyone who knows anything about the law, will tell you that State's Attorneys and US Attorneys have sole discretion as to what charges they will file against a suspect/defendant.
There is no law or statute which "required" such a charge be added and furthermore, based upon mandatory minimums, he was well aware of what the consequences would be if they were found guilty when he did so and I'm convinced that "politics" played a key role in that decision
Therfore Sutton is singularly responsible for their lengthy and IMHO, [un]just sentences and yet he has the nerve to then say he agrees their sentences might be considered "lengthy" for their offense?
And I won't even go into Sutton moving for (and the clueless, idiot judge concurring) that exculpatory evidence be withheld from the jury and to this day, I believe Ramos and Compean had very inferior and inefective representation
The guy is an F'n creep, an a*shole, and should be scorned, hereafter by every right thinking American.
Early on in his career, Ramos wrote out a report after discharging his firearm during an incident in the field. He was reprimanded for doing so by his superiors. He was told that he merely had to inform the FOS that his sidearm had been used and the supervisor would take it from there with the follow up questions. And then the supervisor would actually write out the report himself.
Compean emptied his first clip, changed his magazine, but did not fire from from second clip. Ramos fired one shot, the one shot that hit the smuggler. Ramos was not aware of this because the smuggler was still able to escape into Mexico ( on foot ) under his own power.
What it will not "wipe away" is the government's shame and complicity.
This journalist is not a knee-jerk liberal, quite the contrary. I usually read his opeds as he’s fairly sensible most of the time.
I understand that you must serve at least 5 years of your sentence to be eligible for a pardon. Ramos & Compean did not, and that is why Bush did not pardon them.
The agents should have gotten medals and a raise.
These idiots can't get anything straight. Ramos only failure was to explicitly inform a supervisor that shots were fired. HE DID NOT PROVIDE A WRITTEN REPORT, SINCE HE WAS NOT REQUIRED TO. HE DID NOT TAMPER WITH CASINGS. HE DID NOT LIE TO ANYBODY ABOUT SHOOTING AT DAVILA.
Now, that I've got that off my chest....
A President does not have to wait 5 years. He has the power to issue a pardon at any time.