Illegal Alien Convicted of Killing Border Patrol Officer



An illegal alien convicted of gunning down a Border Patrol officer in Texas could become the 54th Mexican national on America’s Death Row.

A Cameron County jury took barely two hours to find Gustavo Tijerina-Sandoval guilty of capital murder and attempted capital murder. The 34-year-old with a history of illegal border crossings had confessed to shooting Javier Vega Jr. on Aug. 3, 2014.

Tijerina-Sandoval and another illegal alien, Ismael Hernandez-Vallejo, were arrested hours after Vega was killed and his father was shot while the family was fishing near Harlingen. Hernandez-Vallejo will stand trial on the same murder charges in August.

After nearly four years of legal wrangling over the location of the trial, the Brownsville jury quickly delivered its guilty verdict against Tijerina-Sandoval. State District Judge Migdalia Lopez will now determine whether he gets the ultimate punishment. At last count, 53 Mexican citizens have death sentences pending in U.S. prisons.

Tijerina-Sandoval previously was found guilty of repeatedly crossing into the U.S. illegally. Hernandez-Vallejo had been deported twice for doing so.

Since 2012, 13 Border Patrol officers have died in the line of duty in Texas and Arizona.

Vega’s death was classified as occurring in the line of duty after authorities determined the officer pulled his gun trying to protect others. A South Texas immigration checkpoint in Sarita, where Vega was stationed, was renamed in his honor.

About Author

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Bob Dane, the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR)'s Executive Director, has been with FAIR since 2006. His deep belief is that immigration is the most transformational determinant of where we are heading as a nation and that our policies must be reformed in the public interest. Over many years on thousands of radio, TV and print interviews, Bob has made the case that unless immigration is regulated and sensibly reduced, it will be difficult for America to reduce unemployment, increase wages, improve health care and education and heighten national security. Prior to joining FAIR, Bob spent twenty years in network radio, marketing and communications after an earlier career in policy and budgeting within the Reagan Administration. Bob has a degree from George Mason University in Public Administration and Management.

6 Comments

  1. avatar
    Ronald Filipowich on

    Start capital punishment every where in the USA and then start the death penalty for first degree murder now and life in prison for convicted rapests now not later .

  2. avatar

    Seems to me there should be no appeals on this since he confessed. When you enter another nation you are bound by that nation’s law. He is a criminal and sorry don’t feel sorry for him and would prefer that he face the consequences of his behavior sooner rather than later. That’s not racist because illegal is not a race. Furthermore it’s the law. I don’t want to have to live in a nation where borders don’t exist to select whom we allow to come into our nation. We don’t allow just anyone to enter the sanctuary of our homes, we should feel no different about whom we allow to be in our nation as our neighbors, coworkers, etc. When Obama said he was going to change the nation he failed to state he planned on turning us into a middle east country. Our bad, we really should have asked for specifics. Hopefully Obama will finally face justice for his crimes as well.

  3. avatar

    This is just another reason why we need a wall or double layer fence. It would give the advantage to the agents, who frequently now are confronted by two or more individuals. A wall/fence allows the agent to call for help and deal with those who attempt to climb over. The excuse is always “we can’t afford it” but the fact is we can’t afford not to do it. Eliminating future welfare costs will pay for it many times over. There is always plenty of money for the endless wars that people like McCain can’t get enough of.

    The media and the left always want to make villains out of border agents, when the fact is they are in constant danger from attacks, including a rock that comes flying out of nowhere. Rocks are always dismissed as nothing more than a minor nuisance but it’s not some self righteous newspaper columnist who gets hit in the face with one.

    It’s a wonder any one wants to go into law enforcement any more. Something happens and you’re the subject of some edited nationwide video that shows only the end of a confrontation and not all the background, and your career and life are ruined. A couple weeks ago NBA player Sterling Brown was tazed after he had supposedly “complied”with cop’s instructions. Except that is a flat out lie. He tried to get into his vehicle to leave, would not back up when told to, and refused to take his hands out of his pockets when instructed. That is guaranteed to bring a take down because they don’t know if you have a weapon.

  4. avatar

    I’m tired of them thinking we should respect/bow down to those we are giving jobs to, homes. freedom of speech and much else. It’s their responsibility to be thankful and learn our language. I will not learn theirs as they act like we should on jobs. As English as a second language has been said too much., and now even those who were born here think it to be so on jobs. They speak theirs too much and will until higher ups or the Government steps in and says/enforces English only to be spoken on jobs.
    I hope they catch any that are so stupid to push it and think they can kill someone when given so much from AMERICA.

  5. avatar
    VivaLaMigra on

    Oh, of course this dirtbag won’t be executed, ‘cuz after all, that would be “racist!” And the Mexican gov’t wouldn’t like it, so we have to bow down to a foreign power meddling in our judicial system.