NC sheriff gets close look at US border crisis
Posted July 22, 2014
Wentworth, N.C. — Rockingham County Sheriff Sam Page recently traveled to south Texas to help put a local public safety face on the immigration crisis being debated from Washington, D.C., to San Diego.
Page visited McAllen, Texas, and surveyed the Rio Grande by both boat and helicopter to get firsthand understanding of how drugs and guns are imported from Mexico to his county.
"In less than three years, we've arrested 15 drug cartel associates from the Mexican drug cartels in this county," Page said Tuesday in his Wentworth office.
A member of the National Sheriff's Association border security committee, he said law enforcement along the U.S.-Mexico border is so overwhelmed and distracted by the influx of unaccompanied children that they can't keep track of all the cartels crossing into the U.S.
"The problem is, if you have a well-defined line here and you're maintaining that, people are going to try to do an end-around," he said.
Page blames current and past political policy for allowing the border crisis to worsen, and he said the U.S. needs to send a stronger message to those looking to cross the border illegally. He is enlisting other sheriffs to help push for consensus on improved border processing and security.
"The resources are going to have to be applied and the strategies applied, and the laws are going to have to be changed to work with us in an enforcement effort," he said.
"You've got to have the enforcement," he continued. "If we can secure our southern border with Mexico, we can better protect America. Likewise, we can better protect my county."