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May 17, 2013

Deadly crossing

In 2012, sheriff's deputies in Brooks County found 129 bodies, around double the amount from the year before and six times the number recorded in 2010. Most of those who die succumb to the punishing heat and rough terrain that comprise the ranch lands of south Texas. Reuters photographer, Eric Thayer, traveled to Brooks County, Texas and Reynosa, Mexico to investigate the rising rates of immigrant deaths along the border there, spending time at a migrant's hostel in Mexico and with U.S. Border Patrol in Brooks County. Many migrants, after spending several weeks traveling through Mexico and past the Rio Grande, spend a few days in a "stash house," such as Casa del Migrante, in Reynosa, Mexico, and many are ignorant of the treacherous journey ahead. -- Paula Nelson ( 28 photos total)

A U.S. Border Patrol agent from the Rio Grande Valley Sector searches for a group of undocumented immigrants who crossed the Rio Grande River in Mission, Texas March 28, 2013. Brooks County has become an epicenter for illegal immigrant deaths in Texas. (Eric Thayer/Reuters)

U.S. Border Patrol agent, Daniel Tirado, from the Rio Grande Valley Sector looks out at the Rio Grande river in Hidalgo, Texas, March 28, 2013. In 2012, sheriff's deputies found 129 bodies there, six times the number recorded in 2010. Most of those who died succumbed to the punishing heat and rough terrain that comprise the ranch lands of south Texas. (Eric Thayer/Reuters)#

The border fence, Hidalgo, Texas, March 28, 2013. Many migrants often spend a few days in a "stash house", such as the Casa del Migrante, in Reynosa, Mexico, and many are ignorant of the treacherous journey ahead. (Eric Thayer/Reuters)#

U.S. Border Patrol agents search for a group of 50 undocumented immigrants, following a report from a rancher, near Falfurrias, Texas, March 29, 2013.(Eric Thayer/Reuters)#

Two men are taken into custody by the U.S. Border Patrol near Falfurrias, Texas, March 29, 2013. (Eric Thayer/Reuters)#

Two men are in the custody of the U.S. Border Patrol near Falfurrias, Texas, March 29, 2013. Brooks County has become an epicenter for undocumented immigrant deaths in Texas. In 2012, sheriff's deputies found 129 bodies there, six times the number recorded in 2010. (Eric Thayer/Reuters)#

A group of undocumented immigrants, who turned themselves over to U.S. Border Patrol, sit in a restaurant in Encino, Texas, March 29, 2013. Members of the group said their guide left them in the desert and never returned. After being lost for days and running out of food and water they turned themselves in. (Eric Thayer/Reuters)#

People are taken into custody by the U.S. Border Patrol near Falfurrias, Texas, March 29, 2013. In 2012 sheriff's deputies found 129 bodies in Brooks county, six times the number recorded in 2010. Most of those who died succumbed to the punishing heat and rough terrain that comprise the ranch lands of south Texas. (Eric Thayer/Reuters)#

People taken into custody by the U.S. Border Patrol near Falfurrias, Texas, March 29, 2013. (Eric Thayer/Reuters)#

A U.S. Border Patrol agent walks past a rescue beacon near Falfurrias, Texas, March 29, 2013. (Eric Thayer/Reuters)#

A memorial in the desert near Falfurrias, Texas, April 2, 2013. (Eric Thayer/Reuters)#

A sign at the Falfurrias U.S. Border Patrol checkpoint near Falfurrias, Texas, March 29, 2013. (Eric Thayer/Reuters)#

A U.S. Border Patrol agent looks out at the desert near Falfurrias, Texas, March 29, 2013. Most of those who die coming across the border, succumb to the punishing heat and rough terrain that comprise the ranch lands of south Texas. (Eric Thayer/Reuters)#

A sign on the gate of a ranch in Falfurrias, Texas, April 2, 2013. Brooks County is an epicenter of undocumented immigrant deaths in Texas. In 2012, sheriff's deputies found 129 bodies there, six times the number recorded in 2010. (Eric Thayer/Reuters)#

A U.S. Border Patrol agent checks cars at the Falfurrias checkpoint, near Falfurrias, Texas March 29, 2013. Located about 70 miles (113 km) north of the border, 5,000-7,000 cars pass through the checkpoint on a normal day, and 12,000 on holidays.(Eric Thayer/Reuters)#

A car filled with bales of marijuana at a police station in La Grulla, Texas, March 28, 2013. When police tried to pull the car over, the driver led officers on a high speed pursuit, driving the car into the Rio Grande river. The driver abandoned the vehicle and fled back across the river and into Mexico. Border Patrol agents and local and state law enforcement are inundated with not only an increase in the numbers of undocumented immigrants, but drug smugglers as well. (Eric Thayer/Reuters)#

A street sign in the southmost neighborhood in Brownsville, Texas, March 30, 2013. In 2012, sheriff's deputies found 129 bodies in Brooks county, six times the number recorded in 2010. (Eric Thayer/Reuters)#

A boy runs on the shore at the boundary between the United States and Mexico, where the Rio Grande river meets the Gulf of Mexico, Brownsville, Texas, March 31, 2013. (Eric Thayer/Reuters)#

A memorial cross in memory of the people who have died crossing the border at Casa del Migrante in Reynosa, April 1, 2013. Casa del Migrante provides housing, food, clothing and medical care to people who are planning to cross the border, and to those who have been deported from the United States. The words on the cross read, "In memory of the deceased migrants." (Eric Thayer/Reuters)#

A man sits on a couch at Casa del Migrante in Reynosa, April 1, 2013. Casa del Migrante provides housing, food, clothing and medical care to people who are planning to cross the border, and to those who have been deported from the United States. (Eric Thayer/Reuters)#

People relax at Casa del Migrante in Reynosa, April 1, 2013. Casa del Migrante provides housing, food, clothing and medical care to people who are planning to cross the border, and to those who have been deported from the United States. (Eric Thayer/Reuters)#

Beds in a sleeping area at Casa del Migrante in Reynosa, April 1, 2013. (Eric Thayer/Reuters)#

A man washes his clothes at Casa del Migrante in Reynosa, April 1, 2013. (Eric Thayer/Reuters)#

A man is reflected in a mirror at Casa del Migrante in Reynosa, Mexico, April 1, 2013. (Eric Thayer/Reuters)#

A man stands in a sleeping area at Casa del Migrante in Reynosa, April 1, 2013. (Eric Thayer/Reuters)#

A man receives a haircut at Casa del Migrante in Reynosa, April 1, 2013. Casa del Migrante provides housing, food, clothing and medical care to people who are planning to cross the border, and to those who have been deported from the United States. (Eric Thayer/Reuters)#

The unidentified graves of people whose remains were found in the desert in Falfurrias, Texas, April 1, 2013. (Eric Thayer/Reuters)#

The unidentified grave of a person whose remains were found in the desert in Falfurrias, Texas, April 1, 2013. (Eric Thayer/Reuters) #


 
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