McCoy Still Haunted By Border Patrol Failure

Derrick McCoy with Coni Hargrave outside U.S. District Courthouse, Tucson. [Photo by Huey Freeman]

Derrick McCoy is a hardworking young man with numerous skills including a welding certificate. He has lots of references from former employers and possesses a reputation of being a very hard worker who is always on time. He has passed drug tests and has no history of substance abuse. He had no felony charges, arrests or convictions prior to November 11, 2017.

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However since that day, Derrick’s life has been miserable due to what appears to be harassment from the U.S. Border Patrol, which is said to be embarrassed over the Agency’s failed attempt to put Derrick in prison and make him an example to his neighbors and residents of southern Arizona.

On November 11, 2017, Derick was house sitting for some friends in a rural area near Apache, AZ, and about 10 miles south of Rodeo, NM, when four illegal aliens walked onto the property he was responsible for. He confronted the aliens who acted aggressive, and Derrick, who felt threatened, let them know he was armed, but he did not threaten them. After a short conversation, both parties relaxed, and he loaded them in his small SUV telling them he would take them to get help and get them off of the property. He knew Border Patrol agents were nearby and that they had been called.

After going less than a mile down the road, a Border Patrol vehicle approached, and Derrick stopped, and the Border Patrol agents arrested him, telling him he would be taken to Douglas for questioning and then turned loose.

In Douglas he was put in solitary confinement except for a short spell when he was questioned by several agents. After 24 hours Derrick was loaded on a bus with a large group of illegal aliens and taken to Tucson. Derrick was handcuffed and shackled, but the aliens were not.

On the afternoon of November 13, Derrick was taken to Federal court in Tucson and charged with four counts of felony smuggling. Then late at night of the 13th, he was transported in handcuffs and shackles to the Federal lock up in Florence where he was kept until 3:00 a.m. the morning of November 15, when he was transported in handcuffs and shackles back to Tucson.

On November 15, the court assigned Derrick a pre-trial officer; he was given a drug test, and then released into the custody of the people he lives with. His pre-trial officer drove from Tucson to Derrick’s home, 40 miles east of Douglas, to inspect his living arrangement, looking for drugs, guns, or anything suspicious. Nothing was found to be amiss.

On December 7, Derrick’s court-appointed attorney advised him to accept a plea agreement, which would mean several years in a Federal prison. Derrick told his attorney that he was innocent and would not plea. Subsequently the attorney went to work and asked for and received an opportunity to question all four of the illegal aliens separately.

Individually all four aliens told Derrick’s attorney that when a Border Patrol vehicle approached Derrick’s vehicle he immediately applied the brakes and stopped. The Border Patrol said he tried to flee the scene. All four aliens denied that Derrick offered to transport them to Tucson if they would pay him cash money for his services. The Border Patrol said he in fact did offer to transport them north for a cash payment. The aliens’ testimony completely agreed with Derrick’s story and disagreed with the Border Patrol’s accusation.

On December 13, the assistant US attorney told the judge that he did not want to proceed with the case stating that the illegal aliens’ testimony had destroyed the Border Patrol’s position. The charges were dropped and the case dismissed. Immediately the judge issued a written statement ordering the Border Patrol to quickly return Derrick’s personal affects: wallet, driver’s license, smart phone, and firearm.

It took Derrick many trips to town (80 miles each trip) to get his personal belongings. To date, his driver’s license has never been returned. The Border Patrol says that it has been lost.

On the trip to Douglas when Derrick’s firearm was returned, he had an appointment to meet a Federal agent at an office in the Federal complex at the Douglas-Agua Prieta port of entry. At the last minute Derrick received word that the agent would instead meet him at a public park near the port.

When he arrived at the park, six armed Border Patrol agents met him, handed him his firearm, and then told him that he was not allowed on Federal property. It is important to note that armed agents said this without a court order. Indeed, no Federal judge knows about the incident.

Derrick McCoy has applied for a job working on Trump’s famous border wall. The construction company wants to hire Derrick. He is qualified, and he has stellar recommendations; but the US Border Patrol keeps losing his personal information, which keeps them from completing a background check that is required by law. The construction company is being told by the Border Patrol to resubmit Derrick’s application.

When questioned about these recent events, Dion Ethell, the Patrol Agent in Charge at the Douglas border station said, “Human trafficking is a serious crime.” Derrick was not convicted of human trafficking. He went on to say that the Border Patrol did, “Not hold persons or property here for any length of time.” Where is Derrick’s driver’s license? Why did armed Border Patrol agents tell Derrick he wasn’t allowed on Federal property?

The Tucson Sector Chief has refused to comment.

One has to wonder; is Derrick allowed to go into a United States post office?

8 Comments

  1. I’ve met the rancher where Derrick McCoy was when this came down. And knowing others there on the border, I have heard of these kind of debacles before. Southern Arizona is virtually a 3rd world country where US citizen must live armed, vigilant & in ways most people have no experience that would relate. Then trying to do the best to walk the a tightrope between dangerous individuals outnumbering you and then being thrown under the ‘legality bus’ by the ones that should be on a law abiding citizens side… incredible.

  2. First I should say I am not a “border wall conservative.” I am an admirer of Senators McCain and Flake. It is my view that these Senators are honorable and decent men though I may not agree with everything they say and believe. Having said this, I also know the people from whom this young man, McCoy, comes. I have lived and worked around them and many are my friends though we disagree over much in politics. These, too, are honorable, hardworking, decent, law-abiding folks. That is the culture they come from and the way they live their lives. To think that this young man would conduct himself in any manner than that which he claims is absurd to me. But, of course, I know these folks, their character, their forthrightness and their allegiance to honesty and integrity. For years, ranchers and others who are from this environment have “rounded up” illegals and turned them over to BP. They also have fed them and given them safe harbor from the harsh environment that “crossers” often find themselves in. This comes from the same core character. When I think of what young Mr. McCoy did, I know what a risk he took to do the right thing. I know this because I know – with virtually no exception – the people he comes from. The ignorance and abusive conduct of the BP agents was the driving force in this situation; it is their bald-faced disrespect and contempt for these decent and well-meaning people that led to this. Lastly, I will say this: I have worked in association with very fine BP agents, some of whom come from this very culture. They too are honorable, decent, hardworking people. We must see BP agents as who they are, not what we think they are. That is paying respect to people as individuals. The BP agents who have unethically interfered in the life of Mr. McCoy should also be seen as the individuals they are; abusive, unthinking, ignorant and bearing more authority than they deserve or are capable of having. To do this, we honor the BP agents who are a source of pride for all of us – or should be.

  3. Whatever you do, do not write to McSally. All’s you’ll get back is multiple demands for campaign contributions. Billy Vanderbilt’s descendant is alive and well in the 2nd District of Arizona.

  4. I live very near the locale where this happened. The Border Patrol leaves this entire zone open to cartel drug traffickers. I mean, wide open! Many locals handle things on their own, because they suspect a call to the Border Patrol will get their names and locations handed over to the Cartel.
    If a federal prosecutor would look at the finances of some of these BP officials, it might find some very suspicious money.

  5. Well border patrol can be charged for violating Federal Law. 5 U.S.C. §§ 7324 PROHIBITED PERSONNEL PRACTICE on many many counts. 13 rules in total outlined.

    4. deceive or willfully obstruct any person with respect to such person’s right to compete for employment;
    influence any person to withdraw from competition for any position for the purpose of improving or injuring the prospects of any other person for employment;

    6. grant any preference or advantage not authorized by law, rule, or regulation to any employee or applicant for employment (including defining the scope or manner of competition or the requirements for any position) for the purpose of improving or injuring the prospects of any particular person for employment;

    8. take or fail to take, or threaten to take or fail to take, a personnel action with respect to any employee or applicant for employment because of —

    A.any disclosure of information by an employee or applicant which the employee or applicant reasonably believes evidences —

    i. a violation of any law, rule, or regulation, or

    ii. gross mismanagement, a gross waste of funds, an abuse of authority, or a substantial and specific danger to public health or safety, if such disclosure is not specifically prohibited by law and if such information is not specifically required by Executive order to be kept secret in the interest of national defense or the conduct of foreign affairs; or

    B. any disclosure to the Special Counsel, or to the Inspector General of an agency or another employee designated by the head of the agency to receive such disclosures, of information which the employee or applicant reasonably believes evidences —

    i. a violation of any law, rule, or regulation, or

    ii. gross mismanagement, a gross waste of funds, an abuse of authority, or a substantial and specific danger to public health or safety;
    or safety;

    9. take or fail to take, or threaten to take or fail to take, any personnel action against any employee or applicant for employment because of —

    A. the exercise of any appeal, complaint, or grievance right granted by any law, rule, or regulation —
    (i) with regard to remedying a violation of paragraph (8); or
    (ii) other than with regard to remedying a violation of paragraph (8);

    B. testifying for or otherwise lawfully assisting any individual in the exercise of any right referred to in subparagraph (A);

    C. cooperating with or disclosing information to the Inspector General of an agency, or the Special Counsel, in accordance with applicable provisions of law; or

    D. for refusing to obey an order that would require the individual to violate a law;
    discriminate for or against any employee or applicant for employment on the basis of conduct which does not adversely affect the performance of the employee or applicant or the performance of others; except that nothing in this paragraph shall prohibit an agency from taking into account in determining suitability or fitness any conviction of the employee or applicant for any crime under the laws of any State, of the District of Columbia, or of the United States;
    take or fail to take any other personnel action if the taking of or failure to take such action violates any law, rule, or regulation implementing, or directly concerning, the merit system principles contained in section 2301 of this title; or
    These are the federal law and rules violated in his case

  6. Mr Lowe , unfortunately Miss Martha is too busy running for the US Senate to pay any attention to her constituents. after watching her I am afraid she will be no better than the FLAKE she is hoping to replace.

    I understand she milked the ranchers in Cochise county for her last campaign and couldn’t care less about Border Patrol harassment of law abiding citizens.

  7. Representative McSally, please look into this, since those fools McCain and Flake are too busy attempting to derail our President.

  8. While the police are claiming to be here to protect us, it’s becoming rather apparent that no one is here to protect us from the police, at least not the border patrol out of Douglas.
    It’s becoming painfully obvious and truly professionally embarrassing for those apparently few, hard working dedicated professional officers who are above reproach within the border patrol to be working with what now appears to be a bottomless cesspool of rogue, lying, dishonest agents among their ranks.
    It also speaks volumes to the lack of accountable professional leadership overseeing the border patrol, at least within the Douglas sector and probably extending all the way to those in Tucson allegedly over seeing those who are unconvincing claiming to be in charge in Douglas.
    While what has been shamefully committed against Derrick McCoy is shocking enough, the real betrayal of any professional integrity of the border patrol isn’t that act itself, it was in the thinking that it was somehow “ok” by those officers involved in the first place.
    It’s simply an indefensible situation for any allegedly professional law enforcement organization.
    And since “a fish rots from the head down”. Is it of any wonder that the Tucson Sector Chief has refused to comment?
    I wonder what U.S. Representative Martha McSally’s take on this is? After all its in her district…

    The Oracle

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