This Week in USBP History, Vol. 5
October 3 - October 9
Newton-Azrak Award Actions
Jose (Joe) L. Perez
Supervisory Border Patrol Agent
San Diego Sector
On the night of October 3, 1994, Supervisory Border Patrol Agent Jose (Joe) L. Perez was performing his patrol duties in the Dulzura, CA area on Highway 94. Highway 94 runs east and west adjacent to the International Border between the United States and Mexico. While performing his patrol duties, Agent Perez came upon a one-car vehicle accident. Being the first law enforcement officer on the scene, Agent Perez took those steps necessary to notify the proper agencies through the Border Patrol Dispatch, and then took additional steps well above the call of duty.
Agent Perez observed that there were three occupants trapped inside a vehicle that was overturned and resting on its roof. As Agent Perez approached the vehicle, he observed that the doors were jammed shut. Agent Perez used what leverage he could and managed to open one front door. Through this door, Agent Perez was able to remove the driver and the front seat passenger. He placed both of them out of the flow of traffic and returned to the car. Agent Perez then observed that the vehicle was on fire and that there was still one occupant trapped inside the vehicle. Agent Perez reentered the vehicle and doubled his efforts to free the remaining passenger. The last passenger was trapped between the collapsed roof of the vehicle and the rear seat with her legs hanging through the shattered rear window. Using brute strength, Agent Perez was able to force the seat to move sufficiently to allow him to extricate the passenger. Although the vehicle was on fire, Agent Perez took the time to ensure that any possible spinal or neck injuries were cared for before moving the passenger to a safe location. Agent Perez continued performing immediate first aid until the arrival of the paramedics and fire units.
Robert S. Holmes - photo
Border Patrol Agent
Grand Forks, ND
On October 3, 2020 at 9:00 PM, Bottineau Station Border Patrol Agent Robert Holmes assisted local law enforcement with a call regarding a suicidal man who was on top of a 144-foot structure. Beyond the call of duty while facing grave danger, Agent Holmes went to the top of the structure to search for the man. Upon reaching the top, Agent Holmes began searching the massive area which was riddled with shafts, pipes and other industrial hazards. Under the cover of night, Agent Holmes was able to locate the man, who was armed with a knife, near the edge of a grain elevator. Agent Holmes began a tactful conversation with the man and ultimately talked him into storing the knife in his pocket and moving away from the edge to safety. Agent Holmes’ actions brought great credit upon himself and the United States Border Patrol.
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Blog author, retired U.S. Border Patrol Assistant Chief and, current U.S. Border Patrol employee advocate.
Site founder and owner, former Senior Patrol Agent and retired Immigration Special Agent.
U.S. Border Patrol historian and retired Deputy Chief Patrol Agent.
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