July 16th, 2024

Helicopter carrying National Guard members and Border Patrol agent crashes in Texas, killing 3

By The Associated Press on March 8, 2024.

LA GRULLA, Texas (AP) – A helicopter carrying three National Guard members and a Border Patrol agent crashed along the U.S.-Mexico border in Texas on Friday, killing three of the people on board, a county official said.

Starr County Judge Eloy Vera, the county’s top local official, said a fourth person on board was in critical condition. The crash happened near La Grulla, which is in Starr County.

Border Patrol spokespersons did not immediately return messages seeking comment.

THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. AP’s earlier story follows below.

LA GRULLA, Texas (AP) – A helicopter crashed along the U.S-Mexico border in Texas on Friday, authorities said. Officials did not immediately confirm how many people were on board or their condition.

The crash happened in the small town of La Grulla, Texas Department of Public Safety Lt. Christopher Olivarez said. He did not provide further details and referred questions to U.S. Customs and Border Protection.

Border Patrol spokespersons did not immediately return messages seeking comment.

La Grulla is in Texas’ Rio Grande Valley. The Starr County Sheriff’s Office posted on Facebook on Friday that it was assisting with a “downed helicopter incident” on the east side of the county.

In January, a Texas Department of Public Safety helicopter patrolling the state’s border with Mexico lost power and crashed, officials said at the time. The co-pilot suffered a minor hand injury and the helicopter was significantly damaged.

That helicopter was flying as part of Operation Lone Star, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott’s nearly $10 billion border mission that has tested the federal government’s authority over immigration.

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