On Patrol In
Edwards County Texas
U.S. Congressman Ted Poe
In west Texas, where the rattlesnake rules
the hard, rugged land is Edwards County. It is a sparsely
populated place because not much grows on that dusty soil. Local
landmarks include Devil's Sinkhole, a massive bat cave and a
place called Bullhead. This land used to be the home of the
fierce Lipan Apache Indians, dating all the way back to the
This county, near the Texas-Mexico border,
is the size of Delaware. On patrol of this massive place of over
2,000 square miles are only three deputy sheriffs. One of them
Recently, Deputy Hernandez was on patrol about midnight, alone. He
came across a truck that had run a red light in the small quiet
town of Rocksprings, Texas. He pulled the vehicle over and
approached it. He noticed numerous people lying on the floor of
One thing led to another, and the vehicle sped off. Hernandez says
the driver turned around and tried to run him down, so he fired
numerous times at the vehicle. He shot out the tires. So the
vehicle stopped and the occupants, they fled into the darkness.
All except one, who was lying down on the floor, hiding in the
back, wounded by a ricochet.
Deputy Hernandez immediately called the
sheriff, Donald Letsinger. He immediately showed up, along with
the Texas Rangers, to do routine follow-up work.
But then the Federal Government shows up and takes over the
investigation. The Mexican Government is notified that an
illegal from Mexico has been wounded in the United States.
Using poor law enforcement investigation techniques, the illegals
are all interviewed together, but still give conflicting stories
at a later trial.
After the dust settled, the Feds filed
charges on Deputy Hernandez for firing a gun at the van. After
being tried by a zealous prosecutor, Hernandez was convicted in
Federal court. He is in jail waiting to be sentenced. And, yes,
Madam Speaker, by the same Prosecutor's Office that prosecuted
Compean, and Ramos.
Everyone in his hometown of Rocksprings, Texas has sided with
Deputy Hernandez. They are taking care of his family.
But once again, our Federal Government has taken the other side,
the wrong side of the border war. Our government is more
concerned about illegals in the van than they are about the
safety of Deputy Hernandez.
And get this: Our Federal Government even gave these illegals
green cards and allowed them to stay in the United States.
Madam Speaker, this ought not to be. Deputy Hernandez did
everything a normal person would have done in these
circumstances, including immediately reporting the event.
Why is our government so relentless and zealous in prosecuting
border protectors and not protecting the border?
Why does our government work backroom deals with illegals to
convict our law officers?
Why does it seem the Federal Government is so quick to cooperate
with Mexico to thwart border security?
And why does it allow these illegals more consideration than it
does American peace officers?
Gilmer Hernandez is 25 years of age. He is married and has a young
child. He makes $21,000 a year being a lawman in rough west
It is disturbing. This trend is disturbing. Our government is
saying to peace officers on the border, don't protect yourself
on this border because if you do, you will not get protection
from the government. And to the illegals that come in and are
caught, the Federal Government is saying to them, “Fear not. We
are from the Federal Government and we are here to help you.”
Looks like another case of the Federal Government continuing to
swoop in and save the day for the illegals who cross into
The American government needs to gets on the right side, the
American side of the border war.
And that's just the way it is.
Update: Gilmer Hernandez was
by a Federal court to one year and a day and given a $5000 dollar
fine. Local residents are petitioning for his release.