PBS’s Need To Know has unearthed a video which appears to show United States Border Patrol agents killing a Mexican man with a stun gun in a brutal display of excessive force.
Anastacio Hernandez-Rojas died in 2010 after being beaten and hit with a Taser by Border Patrol and Customs and Border Protection agents. Hernandez-Rojas, who was detained by Border Patrol after illegally crossing into California, was being turned over to Mexican immigration authorities when — according to a statement by Customs and Border Protection — the agents removed his handcuffs. The statement claims that Hernandez-Rojas then “became combative,” and started fighting the agents. In response, the agents were forced to deploy a stun gun to “subdue the individual and maintain officer safety.” Hernandez-Rojas stopped breathing, and died in a hospital a short time later.
In the Need To Know video, however, Hernandez-Rojas does not appear to be aggressive at all. In one eyewitness video, Hernandez-Rojas can be heard screaming for help and pleading for his life. In another, he is seen lying on the ground, surrounded by a dozen agents as one deploys the stun gun that would end Hernandez-Rojas’ life.
An eyewitness told Need To Know that she thinks Hernandez-Rojas was “murdered,” and the San Diego coroner’s office classified his death as a homicide.
The full segment will air on Friday, but a preview is available below: