SAN DIEGO – A Border Patrol agent on Tuesday shot and killed a man at the US-Mexico border who threatened to strike another agent with a concrete slab, a spokesman said.
Two men, presumably Mexican, assaulted two Border Patrol agents after crossing the border illegally about one mile west of San Diego's San Ysidro port of entry, Border Patrol spokesman Steven Pitts said.
One of the men climbed the border fence around 7:30 p.m. Tuesday and was about to throw the large slab when an agent fired an unknown number of shots, Pitts said. He was pronounced dead in Mexico.
Tijuana, Mexico, police identified the victim as Jose Alfredo Yanez, 40, and said he was shot at least twice in his body and once in the head.
The other migrant returned safely to Mexico.
One of the Border Patrol agents was kicked in the face and taken to a hospital for injuries that were not life threatening, Pitts said.
Kevin Keenan, executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union in San Diego and Imperial counties said the death raises troubling questions, partly because the suspects were fleeing.
"It doesn't meet the most basic humanitarian standards when someone is fleeing and doesn't pose a threat to the safety of others," he said.
Keenan questioned whether firing a gun was a disproportionate use of force "to stop rock throwers."
San Diego police will lead the investigation into the shooting.