Rising immigrant deaths put burden on county
Sun, 22 Sep 2013 15:37:36 GMT —
FALFURRIAS, Texas -- When immigrants die in their attempt to come to the U.S., local governments along the Mexico border take on the burden of identifying and burying the dead.
For years, immigrants have used well-worn paths into Arizona. But more of them are choosing to cross instead into deep southern Texas, where counties have limited experience in such matters and even fewer financial resources.
That's been the experience in sparsely populated Brooks County, which is now trying to improve its services by performing an autopsy on all immigrants and making greater efforts to identify them.
The county handled 129 bodies last year, more than any other in the nation except for Pima County, Ariz. But nearly a million people live in Pima County; Brooks County has just over 7,100.