Border Patrol restricts agents' use of force

Article subtitle: 
Policy changes ordered by the Border Patrol chief bar agents from firing on fleeing vehicles and discourage shooting at most rock throwers.
Article author: 
Brian Bennett
Article publisher: 
The Los Angeles Times
Article date: 
7 March 2014
Article category: 
National News
Article Body: 

The U.S. Border Patrol has restricted border agents' authority to shoot at moving vehicles or at people throwing rocks, changing a controversial policy that has contributed to at least 19 deaths since 2010.

In a memo released Friday, Border Patrol Chief Michael Fisher directed border agents not to step in front of moving vehicles, nor to use their bodies to block them, in order to open fire at drivers. He also barred shooting at vehicles whose occupants are fleeing from agents.

A deadly threat, which would justify use of force, does not "include a moving vehicle merely fleeing from agents," the new rule states.

Fisher also ordered agents to seek cover or move away from rock throwers if possible and not to shoot at them unless a rock or other object poses an imminent danger of death or serious injury ...