The number of immigrants illegally entering the United States from Mexico has dropped off significantly over the past two weeks, but the rate of “got-aways” has increased.
A Washington Examiner analysis of federal law enforcement data indicated that in the week leading up to the pandemic-era policy Title 42 ending on May 11, Border Patrol agents apprehended 67,759 people and observed approximately 15,780 people who crossed illegally but got away. Roughly 1 person evaded police for every 4.3 who were caught.
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In the week following Title 42’s ending, agents encountered 55% fewer people, 28,473, yet observed 9,571 people cross and then get away. Roughly 1 person evaded police for every 2.5 intercepted.
An immigration policy expert at the Washington Office on Latin America proposed that because a lower percentage of immigrants crossing are seeking asylum, they do not want to get caught and are not surrendering to Border Patrol as children and families often do.
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“Why is Border Patrol reporting a much higher % of migrants evading apprehension (“got-aways”) now, when there are far fewer migrants? My guess: a steep drop in asylum seekers due to the new rule, leaving a migrant population who are far less likely to want to turn themselves in,” Adam Isacson, WOLA’s director for defense insight, tweeted.
The ending of Title 42 also meant tougher consequences for entering the country without authorization. Illegal immigrants caught after May 12 would face a five-year ban on applying through lawful admission avenues, making it more desirable to get in without incident on one’s first attempt.
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