Published Jun 3, 2019 at 8:36 PM | Updated 39 minutes ago
Mother Ducked for Cover as CBP, Suspect Exchanged Fire
A 23-year-old American man died Monday following a shootout with U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers at the San Ysidro Port of Entry, the San Diego Police Department confirmed.
Shots were fired after the man, driving northbound, failed to stop for an inspection at the border crossing located south of San Diego, CBP confirmed.
“It was bullet after bullet after bullet after bullet after bullet -- it was scary, and I mean, we just kind of freaked out,” said Gabriella Berragan, who was at the port of entry Monday.
Berragan was inside her car with her boyfriend, her baby, and her two-year-old daughter when she heard shots ring out.
Deadly Shooting at San Ysidro Border Crossing
NBC 7's Audra Stafford reports from San Ysidro Port of Entry where a U.S. citizen was shot and killed in a gunbattle with border officials Monday night.(Published 6 hours ago)
“We heard three shots -- two to three shots, and it sounded like fireworks,” she told NBC 7 in an exclusive interview.
A CBP spokesperson said a driver in a white pickup truck attempted to drive through the inspection area at around 7:30 p.m.
“The suspect began firing a gun out of his vehicle towards the officers, then exited his vehicle and continued firing at the officers,” a statement from SDPD Homicide said. “The officers returned fire, striking the suspect.”
Berragan said she was terrified by the “madness” because officers were yelling at people “to duck, to hide.”
“It was very terrifying because of the simple fact that we didn’t know where the bullets were coming from. We just saw them coming,” she said. “My first instinct as a mom was to jump back and be with my kids.”
NBC 7 obtained video shot by Berragan’s boyfriend, who had just crossed into the U.S.
US Citizen Dies in Shootout at US-Mexico Border
NBC 7 Audra Stafford updates what we know hours after the shooting occurred in San Ysidro south of San Diego.(Published Tuesday, June 4, 2019)
Dozens of shots can be heard, as well as someone closer to the incident yelling “Get down, everybody get down!”
Zooch Williams, a U.S. citizen who was on the Mexican side of the border waiting in line to cross, said he heard and saw a commotion.
“We hear ‘pop, pop’ -- super gnarly. We’re like, no way, those weren’t fireworks, and our other buddy was, like, ‘No, those were gunshots,’” Williams said. “And then we saw all these Border Patrol dudes running and then they were chasing someone.”
CBP officers and San Diego Fire-Rescue crews tried to treat the suspect at the scene but he died from his injuries, SDPD Homicide investigators said.
CBP has not released the identity of the suspect at this time.
No motive was released for the shooting.
SDPD and the ATF responded to assist in the investigation.
CBP said northbound vehicle and pedestrian traffic was halted for about 30 minutes after the incident. Southbound traffic was not affected.
On Tuesday, five lanes remained closed at the San Ysidro Port of Entry.
Anyone with information regarding this incident can call the Homicide Unit at (619) 531-2293 or Crime Stoppers at (888) 580-8477.
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