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TuesdayOctober 9, 2012

Latino Daily News: Bringing You the Latest Hispanic Current Events and News Stories 24/7

To reflect the dynamic interests of our audience, Latino Daily News is an online daily news source and virtual cultural center for and about Latinos. We offer the latest news headlines, as well as innovative and insightful Hispanic current events stories, photos, videos, and commentaries from a Latino perspective, 24/7.

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Venezuelan Authorities Search for Man Who Killed 7 After Betting Chavez Would Lose

Venezuelan Authorities Search for Man Who Killed 7 After Betting Chavez Would Lose

Photo: Hugo Chavez

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A Venezuelan businessman who bet that opposition candidate Henrique Capriles would win the recent presidential election here killed the two people who won the bet and then used his vehicle to run down five people who were celebrating Hugo Chavez’s win, police said Tuesday.

Juan Losada, police chief of the town of San Francisco in the northwestern state of Zulia, told Efe that the killings commenced immediately after the results of Sunday’s presidential election were announced.

Abigal Villasmil, 29, is beign sought by police after allegedly shooting and killing Nelson Oviedo, 21, and Alexander Anez, 23, with whom he reportedly had bet a large amount of money that Capriles would win the election, Losada said.

Immediately after the news that Chavez had won was released, and so that he would not have to make good on the bet, Villasmil allegedly shot Oviedo and Anez, with whom he was watching television in a home in San Francisco.

After killing the pair, he fled but just a few blocks from the murder scene Villasmil drove his car into a crowd of people celebrating Chavez’s triumph “killing four immediately and another who died later in a hospital,” the police chief said.

“We have found the vehicle, but not Villasmil, who remains a fugitive,” said Losada, adding that witnesses to the bet - and perhaps the initial crime - “have not wanted to contribute information to the investigation,” including the size of the bet.

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Los Angeles’ Homegirl Cafe Gives Troubled Youth a Second Chance

Los Angeles’ Homegirl Cafe Gives Troubled Youth a Second Chance

Photo: Los Angeles' Homegirl Cafe Gives Troubled Youth a Second Chance

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Homegirl Cafe offers work to young people who live in violent surroundings, as in the case of Pamela Diaz, who was unable to find a job after leaving prison in February 2011.

Pamela grew up in a tough environment where she even got to the point of sharing with her own mother and sister the drugs she had been addicted to from the age of 15.

Though never a member of a street gang herself, she used to hang out with some of the dangerous delinquents she had known from childhood in the poor East Los Angeles neighborhood where she was born.

But in November 2011, Homegirl Cafe gave her a hand to get ahead, something no one in her life had ever done for her.

She took classes to learn to be a good mother, having had two children taken away by social services, and was given counseling to help her start having controlled visits to the daughter she gave birth to in jail and was also on the point of losing.

The founder of Homegirl Cafe is Mexican-born Pati Zarate, a community activist and chef who was the secretary of the Rev. Greg Boyle when the Jesuit priest founded Homeboy Industries as part of an effort to rehabilitate former gangmembers in the Boyle Heights neighborhood.

While still working with Father Greg, Zarate developed a catering business out of her home in the Dolores Mission community.

She opened her first restaurant, El Zarape, in the neighborhood and, in accord with the philosophy behind Homeboy Industries, Chef Pati employed young women from troubled backgrounds.

In 2005 came the Homegirl Cafe, a restaurant that helps women like Pamela, who today has full custody of her little girl and is at last free of her drug addiction.

“I love this work and the chance they’ve given me. I have supervisors who know who I am, I don’t have to hide it, but I also get a lot of help from therapy and classes when I need them,” Diaz told Efe about her job as a Homegirl Cafe waitress.

Some 40 young women work full time in the restaurant and in total there are about 145 people who are trained at the cafe as well as in related companies like Homeboy Bakery and Homeboy Farmers Markets.

Diaz’s story is linked to that of Sara Gaitan, who is in charge of planting and harvesting some of the vegetables and herbs used at the cafe in one of the Homegirl Gardens.

“I was into the world of street gangs from the time I was 13 and was hit by a bullet in the chest at 18. At age 20 I went to jail for the first time and when I got out, there was no way I could find work. Homeboy Industries and Homegirl Cafe gave me the chance to change my life,” she told Efe.

Like many women who work in the cafe, Gaitan had no stable family structure, and after her father died she let herself be dragged into the hectic world of the streets.

“There’s no love like the love of the homeys, which isn’t like the love of a family but it’s almost better, but there comes a point when the line between love and big trouble is erased, and it’s only when we’re older that we realize the difference and then it’s often too late,” she said.

But everything has changed now for Gaitan, who for 18 months has been in charge of this organic vegetable garden, one of four with which Homegirl Cafe plans to produce 30 percent of all the vegetables and herbs it uses by the end of the year.

About 10,000 people approach Homeboy Industries annually looking for work, to have a tattoo removed or to attend training courses.

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Jennifer Lopez’s Upcoming Series “The Fosters” Being Condemned by ‘One Million Moms’ Group

Jennifer Lopez’s Upcoming Series “The Fosters” Being Condemned by ‘One Million Moms’ Group

Photo: Jennifer Lopez's ABC Family Series "The Fosters" Being Condemned by 'One Million Moms' Group

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The seemingly always-outraged group known as One Million Moms now has its sites set on Jennifer Lopez, or rather, her new ABC Family show “The Fosters”, because it follows “a lesbian couple and their diverse family.”

Though the show has yet to air a single episode or even film the pilot, the premise is enough to enrage the conservative watchdog group.

In a released statement, One Million Moms accused ABC of having “lost their minds” for continuing to grow the list of so-called “anti-family programs.

One Million Moms was also the group behind the protest of JC Penney when the company announced openly gay Ellen DeGeneres as a new spokesperson.

A portion of Christian groups latest statement:

ABC Family reported the comedy-drama pilot, working with the title “The Fosters,” is about two women raising a “21st century,” multi-ethnic mix of foster and biological kids. While foster care and adoption is a wonderful thing and the Bible does teach us to help orphans, this program is attempting to redefine marriage and family by having two moms raise these children together. One Million Moms is not sure how the explanation will be given on how the biological children were conceived. None of this material is acceptable content for a family show.

Hollywood is continuing to push an agenda that homosexuality is acceptable when scripture states clearly it is a sin. As Christians, the Bible also says that we must speak up against sin. If we remain silent then we are guilty of sin also.

Lopez will be an executive producer for the hour-long project. Casting has not been announced. It’s still in the pilot stage and hasn’t been picked up for a series yet. Let’s stop this dead in it its tracks.

One Million Moms is asking supporters to help write to ABC Family and urge them not to air programs such as Lopez’s which they claim promote anti-family agendas. They are also asking advertisers to pull commercials from the network as well.

The group has also taken issue with Skittles commercials, TV Land’s “The Soul Man”, ABC’s “666 Park Avenue”, Urban Outfitters stores, NBC’s “The New Normal”, Gap stores, both DC and Marvel Comics, and many other stores, ads, and programs.

Read more by HS News Staff →

LATINO BLOTTER: Body of 17-Month-Old Found, Mother’s Boyfriend, Robert Rodriguez, Person of Interest

LATINO BLOTTER: Body of 17-Month-Old Found, Mother’s Boyfriend, Robert Rodriguez, Person of Interest

Photo: LATINO BLOTTER: Body of 17-Month-Old Found, Mother's Boyfriend a Person of Interest

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The body of 17-month-old Justin Kowalczik was found in a Long Island backyard and police are looking at the boyfriend of his mother, Robert Rodriguez, as a possible suspect.

The grisly find came after a Suffolk County Child Protective Services worker arrived at the home Heather Kowalczik, 29, the boy’s mother, and Rodriguez lived in with two other children, a 6- and 9-year-old. The two older children are Rodriguez and Kowalczik’s, but Justin was not Rodriguez’s.

The CPS worker was there for a wellness check on 6-year-old Alex who is autistic. While being interviewed, the mother reportedly “broke down” and told the cops “what Robert did,” saying baby Justin’s body was buried in their backyard. The child’s death had not been reported.

When authorities dug up the yard and found the child’s body, Rodriguez, who was not home at the time of the search, immediately became a person of interest. When Rodriguez learned of the search, he pulled Robert Jr. out of school and took off. An Amber Alert was issued and police were able to find the pair. Investigators say Rodriguez is “not cooperating,” but has not been arrested.

Justin Kowalczik was born in 2009, and while neighbors say they had known of the pregnancy, the mother told them she had been in a car accident and lost the baby. The body was reportedly buried in July 2010, though it remains unclear how he died.

Police say Rodriguez did not live in the house the family was renting, and the landlord has already stated she is “disgusted” and does not want them coming back.

As of Sunday, no arrests had been made in the case.

Read more by HS News Staff →

See Latin America’s Nominations for the 85th Academy Awards’ Foreign Film Category

See Latin America’s Nominations for the 85th Academy Awards’ Foreign Film Category

Photo: See Latin America's Nominations for the 85th Academy Awards' Foreign Film Category

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On Monday, the films from a record 71 countries vying for the 85th Academy Awards’ Foreign Language Film award were announced.

The 2012 official submissions from Latin America and Spain are:

- Argentina, Clandestine Childhood
      Director - Benjamín Ávila
      Actors – Natalia Oreiro, Benjamin Avila, Ernesto Alterio

- Brazil, The Clown (O Palhaço)
      Director - Selton Mello
      Actors – Paulo Jose, Selton Mello, Larissa Maneloa

- Chile, No
      Director – Pablo Larraín
      Actors – Gael Garcia Bernal, Alfredo Castro, Alejandro Goic

- Colombia, The Snitch Cartel (El cartel de los sapos)
      Director – Carlos Moreno
      Actors – Manolo Cardona, Tom Sizemore, Juana Acosta

- Dominican Republic, Jaque Mate
      Director - José María Cabral
      Actors – Federico Abreu, Luis Manuel Aguilo, Marcos Bonetti

- Mexico, After Lucia (Despues de Lucia)
      Director - Michel Franco
      Actors – Tessa Ia, Gonzalo Vega Jr., Tamara Yazbek

- Peru, The Bad Intentions (Las malas intenciones)
      Director - Rosario García-Montero
      Actors - Fatima Buntinx, Katerina D’Onofrio, Melchor Gorrochategui

- Spain, Blancanieves
      Director - Pablo Berger
      Actor – Maribel Verdu, Angela Molina, Daniel Gimenez Cacho

- Uruguay, The Delay (La demora)
      Director - Rodrigo Plá
      Actors- Roxana Blanco, Carlos Vallarino, Oscar Pernas

- Venezuela, Rock, Paper, Scissors (Rock, Paper, Scissors)
      Director - Hernán Jabes
      Actors – Xavier Abreu, Alberto Alifa, Leandro Arvelo

The 85th Academy Awards nominations will be announced live on Thursday, January 10, 2013, at 5:30 a.m. PT in the Academy’s Samuel Goldwyn Theater.

Academy Awards for outstanding film achievements of 2012 will be presented on Sunday, February 24, 2013, at The Dolby Theatre at Hollywood & Highland Center, and televised live on the ABC Television Network. The Oscar presentation also will be televised live in more than 225 countries worldwide. Seth MacFarlane, the funny man behind Family Guy and various other animated comedies is set to host the event.

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Just In: Blog del Narco: Slain Cartel Leaders Body Stolen in Mexico

Just In: Blog del Narco: Slain Cartel Leaders Body Stolen in Mexico

Photo: The body of Heriberto Lazcano, leader of Los Zetas

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The body of Heriberto Lazcano, leader of Los Zetas, Mexico’s largest and most dangerous drug cartel, has been stolen from a funeral home by a group of armed men. Lazcano was killed on Sunday in a shootout with Mexican Marines.

Lazcano’s body and that of another man had been taken to a funeral home in the town of Sabinas, in the northern state of Coahuila, after the shootout.

The Mexican Navy, which conducted the operation against the Zetas leader, said fingerprints and photographs had been used to identify the body as Lazcano’s before it was stolen.

Coahuila State Prosecutor Homero Ramos told reporters that gunmen wearing face masks had entered the parlor with heavily armed bodyguards, overpowering the staff.

“They took the bodies, stuck them in a hearse, and made the owner drive it off,” Ramos said.

Local police believe a recent surge in mass killings is due to a split within the Zetas cartel. Lazcano was thought to be the leader of one faction, while the other is supposedly led by Miguel Angel Trevino Morales.
Lazcano, a Mexican Army Special Forces deserter, was suspected of hundreds of killings, including the June 2004 slaying of Francisco Ortiz Franco, a top editor of a Tijuana newspaper that reported on drug trafficking.
Over the last six years, more than 50,000 people are believed to have died in violence blamed on organized crime in Mexico.

Los Zetas formed in 1999, when commandos of the Mexican Army’s elite forces deserted their ranks and decided to work as the armed wing of the Gulf Cartel, a powerful drug trafficking organization. In February 2010, Los Zetas broke away from their former employer and formed their own criminal organization. They are now considered to be the most technologically advanced and powerful cartel in Mexico.

The name of the gang most likely originated from the name of its first commander, Arturo Guzman Decena, a high-ranking officer in the Federal Judicial Police whose radio code was Z1, or Zeta 1 in Spanish.
Los Zetas have carried out multiple massacres and attacks on both civilians and rival cartels, and are known for their preference for brutality over bribery in their dealings. They are known for violent and bloody attacks, such as the 2010 and 2011 San Fernando massacres, in which 251 people died, and the 2011 Durango massacre, which claimed the lives of 249 civilians.

To read more in Spanish at Blog del narco

Read more at HS News Blog del Narco

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LATINO BLOTTER: Puerto Rican Mother Accused of Prostituting her Daughter, 14

LATINO BLOTTER: Puerto Rican Mother Accused of Prostituting her Daughter, 14

Photo: Betsian Carrasquillo Penaloza prostituted her daughter

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Puerto Rican mother Betsian Carrasquillo Penaloza has been arrested under suspicion of prostituting her 14-year-old daughter.

Federal agents say Carrasquillo, 34, took her 14-year-old daughter and two other girls to the Sheraton Hotel at the San Juan Convention Center in Puerto Rico.

The girls were being taken to the hotel after Carrasquillo unknowingly met with undercover agents and told them the prices to sleep with the girls.

As of Friday, Carrasquillo had not entered a plea and remained in jail.

According to the criminal complaint, Carrasquillo, also known as “Gordi la comehombres” (“Fatty the Maneater”), was offering sex with her teenage daughter for $500 and $750 for sex the other two girls.

On Monday, Puerto Rican singer Ricky Martin pointed to this case as yet another example of a need for change.

“This regrettable case of child prostitution reported in Puerto Rico is another horrible example that human trafficking is a crime that does not give options to their victims. We have to influence out society to understand that we have an invisible crime on which it necessary to act.”

The singer is the president and founder of the Ricky Martin Foundation, which was formally established in 2005 to advocate for the well being of children around the world. The foundation’s principal program, People for Children, condemns child exploitation as a result of human trafficking.

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Gael Garcia Bernal Set to Begin Work on ‘The Dallas Buyer’s Club’ with McConaughey

Gael Garcia Bernal Set to Begin Work on ‘The Dallas Buyer’s Club’ with McConaughey

Photo: Gael Garcia Bernal Set to Begin Work on 'The Dallas Buyer's Club' with McConaughey

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Gael Garcia Bernal may soon be joining Matthew McConaughey as part of the cast of The Dallas Buyer’s Club.

The film revolves around the real-life events of a Texas electrician, Ron Woodroof (McConaughey), who is diagnosed with AIDS and takes on the U.S. Food and Drug Administration as she fights to bring alternative drugs into the U.S. for himself and others battling HIV/AIDS.

Garcia Bernal, 33, is said to be taking on the role of an effeminate gay man with AIDS who assists Woodroof.

Hilary Swank was also in the works for the film – at Cannes it was being shopped as a McConaughey/Swank film – but she has since dropped out.

ImageThe screenplay for The Dallas Buyer’s Club was written by Melisa Wallack (Mirror Mirror, Meet Bill) and Craig Borten.

McConaughey recently stunned many when he revealed his newly slender physique. Know for his muscular body, his current appearance was quite jarring. His physical transformation for this role is akin to Tom Hanks’ preparation for Philadelphia, in which he played a man with AIDS who is fired from a conservative law firm when they learn of his condition.

Born in Guadalajara, Mexico, Garcia Bernal recently starred in the Spanish-language American comedy Casa de Mi Padre alongside Will Ferrell.

Most recently, the Mexican actor starred as René, an advertising executive who comes up with campaign to encourage the Chilean people of the late 1980s to vote ‘No’ on whether to allow General Augusto Pinochet to lead their country for another eight years. The film itself is called No.

As The Dallas Buyer’s Club project is still taking off and preparing to start in November, No will be Chile’s official entry for the foreign-language Oscar. It has already won 2012’s Art Cinema Award, the top prize at the Cannes Film Festival’s Director’s Fortnight section.

Read more by HS News Staff →

St. Louis Rams Danny Amendola Suffers Scary Injury

St. Louis Rams Danny Amendola Suffers Scary Injury

Photo: Danny Amendola Suffered Life-Threatening Injury

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St. Louis Rams wide receiver Danny Amendola sustained a life threatening injury last Thursday night.

Amendola, who is Mexican-American, dislocated his clavicle against Arizona and left the game in the first half. The next day he was ruled out 6-7 weeks, which was better news then expected.

However, there was scary news when Fox football reporter Jay Glazer revealed that Amendola’s clavicle popped in and could have threatened his trachea and aorta. The Rams medical trainers put his clavicle back into place.

The Rams called the league to find out if another player suffered an injury like this, but Amendola is the first player on record to suffer such an injury. Surgery is not required but Amendola’s status to return is unknown.

This is a very scary incident for the NFL who have focused on trying to decrease head injuries. Now when a player breaks or dislocates their clavicle there will be major concerns when the medical staff treats the player. 

Story Written by:  HS News Sportswriter:  Nate Jacobson


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President Felipe Calderon Meets with His Successor to Discuss Mexico’s Economic Challenges

President Felipe Calderon Meets with His Successor to Discuss Mexico’s Economic Challenges

Photo: President Felipe Calderon Prepares for Transition

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President Felipe Calderon and President-elect Enrique Peña Nieto held their fourth meeting as part of the transition process and discussed Mexico’s economic situation and challenges, the Office of the President said.

Calderon met with the president-elect on Monday at the presidential residence “for a dialogue on economic issues,” the Office of the President said in a statement.

A “detailed presentation on the current state of the economy was made” and the achievements under the current administration were discussed, the statement said.

The meeting also included a “review of the challenges in the area and matters that will require follow-up by the incoming administration,” the Office of the President said.

Calderon and Peña Nieto, who were accompanied at the meeting by their economic teams, said they would exchange information on the economic situation “to achieve the goal of ensuring an orderly and transparent transition process,” the statement said.

The two men held their first meeting on Sept. 5 to begin the transition process and vowed to have a smooth and orderly handover of power.

Calderon and Peña Nieto discussed security and possible changes to an anti-drug strategy that has led to more than 50,000 deaths at their second and third meetings.

The transition team and the Calderon administration have been working to ensure continuity in government operations once Peña Nieto is sworn in on Dec. 1.

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U.S. Diplomat Travels to Brazil to Discuss Economic Partnerships

U.S. Diplomat Travels to Brazil to Discuss Economic Partnerships

Photo: U.S. Brazil Enhance Relationship

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Assistant Secretary for Economic and Business Affairs Jose W. Fernandez will travel to Brasilia and Recife, Brazil October 9-11, 2012.

Assistant Secretary Fernandez will travel to Brasilia Oct 9-10 for the “VII U.S.-Brazil Economic Partnership Dialogue” and Domestic Finance for Development (DF4D) Conference.

Assistant Secretary Fernandez will travel to Recife Oct 10-11 to meet with Brazilian Government officials and business community representatives and discuss trade, investment, and infrastructure opportunities in North Eastern Brazil.

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US Insurance Giant to Buy Brazil’s Largest Health Insurer for $4.9 Billion

US Insurance Giant to Buy Brazil’s Largest Health Insurer for $4.9 Billion

Photo: US Insurance Giant to Buy Brazil's Largest Health Insurer for $4.9 Billion

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UnitedHealth Group Inc plans to buy 90 percent of Brazil’s largest health insurer, Amil Participacoes SA, for roughly $4.9 billion, the companies said Monday.

UHG, the leading health insurer in the United States, will initially acquire about 60 percent of Amil from the current controlling shareholders and management, the firms said in a regulatory filing.

A public offer for the other 30 percent will come in 2013.

The agreement calls for Amil’s founder, Edson de Godoy Bueno, to retain 10 percent of the company - he and partner Dulce Pugliese currently hold 70 percent - for at least five years and to remain the chairman and CEO of the Brazilian firm.

Bueno is also to acquire $470 million worth of shares of UHG, making him the U.S. giant’s largest shareholder, with an entitlement to a seat on the board.

The deal is subject to approval by Brazil’s National Health Agency.

Besides providing prepaid health services to 5 million policyholders, Amil owns and operates 50 hospitals. The firm expects revenues of $5 billion in 2012.

The number of Brazilians with private health insurance increased from 35 million in 2005 to 48 million, which is still only about a quarter of the population.

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Hundreds Attend Funeral of Border Patrol Agent thought To Have Died by Friendly Fire

Hundreds Attend Funeral of Border Patrol Agent thought To Have Died by Friendly Fire

Photo: Border Patrol Agent Nicholas Ivie Laid to Rest

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Hundreds of people gathered Monday at a Mormon church in Arizona for the funeral of Border Patrol agent Nicholas Ivie, who died last week in what appears to be an incident of friendly fire.

Dozens of Border Patrol agents, several of them on horseback, stood guard around the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Sierra Vista.

Ivie died in an exchange of gunfire in the wee hours of last Tuesday in a mountainous area some 10 kilometers (6.5 miles) east of Bisbee, Arizona, and several kilometers north of the border with Mexico, an area well-known for being a migrant-smuggling corridor.

Last Friday, the FBI said that there were firm indications that Border Patrol agents exchanged shots among themselves in an apparent case of mistaken identity.

Ivie, 30, and two other agents arrived separately in the area in response to signals from an electronic sensor.

The acting Cochise County sheriff, Rod Rothrock, said that Ivie and the other agents arrived in the area in separate vehicles and then continued on foot to the site of the shootout.

George McCubbin, who heads the agents’ union, the National Border Patrol Council, told the The Arizona Republic that Ivie entered a depression in the ground from the north while the other two agents, a man and a woman, entered from the south.

Investigators believe that Ivie thought that he had run across an armed smuggler and opened fire, wounding the male agent, said McCubbin. The agents were less than 20 meters (65 feet) apart when the gunfire erupted.

The wounded agent returned fire, killing Ivie, McCubbin said.

Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano last week visited the Arizona border and met with Ivie’s family and with the FBI agents carrying out the investigation. She also toured the area where the incident occurred aboard a helicopter.

This is the first death of a Border Patrol agent along the Arizona-Mexico boundary since Brian Terry died in December 2010 in a confrontation with criminals.

Read more by HS News Staff →

TuesdayOctober 9, 2012