Man killed as suspected smuggler goes off-road while fleeing deputies, Medina County sheriff says

Wire may have hit passenger in the pickup bed, as truck barreled through fences and fields

MEDINA COUNTY, Texas – A man believed to be an undocumented immigrant is dead, and an unknown number of others are on the run, after the truck they were riding in went off-road in an attempt to evade Medina County Sheriff’s deputies.

Medina County Sheriff Randy Brown says a deputy spotted the pickup truck on FM 2200, west of Devine, with a cover over the truck bed. A report had come in from farther south that the vehicle might be smuggling undocumented immigrants, he said, and the deputy attempted to pull it over.

Instead, Brown, says the driver took off. Soon after deputies lost the truck, Brown said it left the road and drove onto private property, barreling through fields and fences.

They found evidence, Brown said, indicating some wire had scraped over the truck cab and hit a man who was riding in the bed.

Deputies found the truck abandoned off of CR 6610, in between FM 463 and CR 5710, with the man dead in the back.

Though they don’t know how many other undocumented immigrants may have been in the truck, Brown estimated there could have been 12 to 15.

U.S. Customs and Border Patrol agents assisted in the search for the other passengers, and DPS Troopers were also on scene, while a helicopter combed the area from the sky. None of the truck’s other occupants had been found when KSAT spoke with Brown.

“We’ve had a couple of calls. We’ve checked a couple of houses, kind of normal stuff. It’s sad this is just another day at the office for us, because this is every day,” the sheriff said.

Brown said the driver’s recklessness is what killed the passenger, and they will likely face an involuntary manslaughter charge -- a first-degree felony -- when found.


About the Authors:

Garrett Brnger is a reporter with KSAT 12.

Misael started at KSAT-TV as a photojournalist in 1987.