Skip to main content

Source: 2 questioned in Mexico over fatal shooting of U.S. Border Patrol agent

From Rafael Romo, CNN
updated 9:24 PM EDT, Thu October 4, 2012
Customs and Border Protection agent Nicholas Ivie was killed Tuesday near Naco, Arizona.
Customs and Border Protection agent Nicholas Ivie was killed Tuesday near Naco, Arizona.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • NEW: Napolitano will go to Arizona to talk with fellow officials about the investigation
  • 2 men are being questioned, a source in Mexico's attorney general's office says
  • They were detained near the U.S. border with drugs and guns, says the source
  • They are being questioned about the fatal shooting of a U.S. Border Patrol agent

(CNN) -- Two men were being questioned Thursday by Mexican authorities about a shooting that killed a U.S. Border Patrol agent and wounded another near the U.S.-Mexican border in Arizona, a source in the Mexican attorney general's office said.

The Mexican army handed over to local authorities in Sonora two men they had detained near the American border, the source in the federal department said Thursday. The two were in possession of drugs and guns when they were detained, added the source.

Local authorities are investigating if the pair had anything to do with Tuesday's shooting near Naco, Arizona, where Border Patrol agents came under fire after responding to a sensor that had gone off nearby.

U.S. authorities have identified the agent killed as 30-year-old Nicholas Ivie. The Provo, Utah, native, who joined the Border Patrol in January 2008, is survived by his wife and two young children.

Ivie is the 14th agent killed in the line of duty since 2008, including three this year.

He was killed near a border station recently named for Brian Terry, whose 2010 death led to the public disclosure of the botched Fast and Furious gun-smuggling sting, according to Sen. Chuck Grassley of Iowa.

What was 'Fast and Furious'?

The agent who was wounded has not been identified. After the shooting, he was airlifted to a hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.

He was released from the hospital Wednesday, said Jeremy Copeland, an agent with the Tucson Sector of U.S. Border Patrol.

U.S. Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano will travel Friday to Arizona, along with other federal officials, "to express their condolences" to Ivie's family, according to department spokesman Matt Chandler.

"Napolitano (and the others) will also meet with federal, state and local law enforcement officials at the Brian A. Terry Border Patrol Station in Bisbee, Arizona, regarding the ongoing investigation," Chandler said in a statement.

In addition to Mexican authorities, the FBI is conducting a joint investigation with the Cochise County Sheriff's Office. James Turgal, special agent in charge of the FBI's Phoenix division, has declined to say if the Border Patrol agents involved in the incident returned fire.

As of Wednesday, investigators had not found the weapon used in the shooting, a U.S. law enforcement official said.

Lanny Breuer, assistant attorney general for the Criminal Division of the Justice Department, said earlier this week that investigators were at the scene.

"Every time that a law enforcement person is either killed or shot or injured in the line of duty, we have to take a moment and think of our families and think of the heroes involved," Breuer said.

Seven bodies found in western Mexico

CNN's Eduardo Aragon contributed to this report.

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
updated 10:26 AM EST, Wed February 6, 2013
Advocates say the exam includes unnecessarily invasive and irrelevant procedures -- like a so-called "two finger" test.
updated 7:09 PM EST, Tue February 5, 2013
Supplies of food, clothing and fuel are running short in Damascus and people are going hungry as the civil war drags on.
updated 1:01 PM EST, Wed February 6, 2013
Supporters of Richard III want a reconstruction of his head to bring a human aspect to a leader portrayed as a murderous villain.
updated 10:48 AM EST, Tue February 5, 2013
Robert Fowler spent 130 days held hostage by the same al Qaeda group that was behind the Algeria massacre. He shares his experience.
updated 12:07 AM EST, Wed February 6, 2013
As "We are the World" plays, a video shows what looks like a nuclear attack on the U.S. Jim Clancy reports on a bizarre video from North Korea.
The relationship is, once again, cold enough to make Obama's much-trumpeted "reset" in Russian-U.S. relations seem thoroughly off the rails.
Ten years on, what do you think the Iraq war has changed in you, and in your country? Send us your thoughts and experiences.
updated 7:15 AM EST, Tue February 5, 2013
Musician Daniela Mercury has sold more than 12 million albums worldwide over a career span of nearly 30 years.
Photojournalist Alison Wright travelled the world to capture its many faces in her latest book, "Face to Face: Portraits of the Human Spirit."
updated 7:06 PM EST, Tue February 5, 2013
Europol claims 380 soccer matches, including top level ones, were fixed - as the scandal widens, CNN's Dan Rivers looks at how it's done.
updated 7:37 AM EST, Wed February 6, 2013
That galaxy far, far away is apparently bigger than first thought. The "Star Wars" franchise will get two spinoff movies, Disney announced.
updated 7:27 PM EDT, Fri July 25, 2014
It's an essential part of any trip, an activity we all take part in. Yet almost none of us are any good at it. Souvenir buying is too often an obligatory slog.
ADVERTISEMENT