Vehicle pursuits may make for exciting movie scenes and reality TV, but in real life, police chases are dangerous and often deadly. The U.S. Border Patrol — overseen by Customs and Border Protection, the largest law enforcement agency in the land — increasingly engages in vehicle pursuits that result in mounting injuries and deaths.

Our client, Angie, lost her son as a result of a Border Patrol vehicle pursuit in August 2021. As detailed in The New York Times and in Spanish in Univision, she seeks answers surrounding the death of her son, who died in the hospital without the agency ever informing his family the circumstances around his death.

The agency operates with almost no transparency. This culture of impunity puts lives and communities at risk of grave harm each time a chase occurs.

The ACLU of Texas and ACLU of New Mexico partnered to produce the following fact sheet on the disturbing trend of deadly Border Patrol vehicle pursuits. We analyzed Border Patrol’s recently released vehicle pursuit policy, which reveals troubling discretionary authority given to agents. We also evaluate the department’s deeply flawed oversight and investigation protocols surrounding the pursuits, including the involvement of Border Patrol’s Critical Incident Teams — internal investigative units tasked with protecting the agency from liability and further obscuring the truth behind deadly vehicle pursuits.

Click the link below to download and read the fact sheet.