Maverick County sheriff visits shelter housing 1,800 migrants in Piedras Negras

County preparing to be ready for anything

MAVERICK COUNTY, Texas – President Donald Trump used his State of the Union address Tuesday night to continue pushing for a border wall and warned about caravans of immigrants on the border. The Maverick County sheriff visited the shelter in Piedras Negras, Coahuila, located across the border from Eagle Pass, where around 1,800 migrants are now staying.

Maverick County Sheriff Tom Schmerber said the sheriff’s office is getting ready in case anything happens during the next few weeks, as the migrants are expected to apply for asylum.

“Those are big buildings. They use to be maquiladoras,” Schmerber said about where the migrants are staying.

Maquiladoras are factories in Mexico that operate under preferential tariff programs and are run by foreign companies.

Since the caravan’s arrival this week, federal agencies have arrived at Eagle Pass to support the border town. Schmerber said members of his agency met with members of the Texas Department of Public Safety on Tuesday.

“They had a radio technician make sure all the communication is the same,” Schmerber said.

Even though there’s no border wall for many miles in Maverick County, Schmerber said he doesn’t believe a wall is needed.

“Hire more personnel. Get technology. I think it will be more efficient than building a wall,” he said.

As asylum seekers wait at the shelter, the sheriff said, law enforcement officers want to be ready.

“We might have a situation here. I hope not, but if we do, it’s going to happen soon,” Schmerber said.

About the Author

Tiffany Huertas is a reporter for KSAT 12 known for her in-depth storytelling and her involvement with the community.

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