Federal Jury in Del Rio Convicts Honduran National of Illegal Re-Entry and Assaulting U.S. Border Patrol Agents
In Del Rio last night, a federal jury convicted 49–year-old Honduran National Leivin Pineda for illegal re-entry into the U.S. and assaulting a U.S. Border Patrol agent near Eagle Pass, announced U.S. Attorney John F. Bash and FBI Special Agent in Charge Christopher Combs, San Antonio Division.
Evidence presented during trial revealed that on September 2, 2018, U.S. Border Patrol agents observed the defendant, who they believed to be an illegal alien, walking along FM 1907 in Maverick County. The agents attempted to approach Pineda, but he fled on foot into the brush. At several points during the foot chase, Pineda threw softball-sized rocks at a high velocity towards the agents’ heads. During the pursuit, the agents repeatedly gave verbal commands to stop, but Pineda refused. Due to Pineda’s actions and that the rocks thrown at the agents could cause serious physical injury or death, a pursuing agent drew his firearm and shot Pineda in the upper chest/left upper arm area in order to neutralize the threat.
Testimony also revealed that Pineda had illegally entered the U.S. on three previous occasions. He was last removed from the U.S. on July 13, 2018, in Alexandria, LA.
Following the incident, Pineda received medical treatment and was released from the hospital. Pineda has since remained in federal custody.
Pineda faces up to 20 years in federal prison on the assault charge and up to two years in federal prison for illegal re-entry. Sentencing is scheduled for later this year in front of U.S. District Judge Alia Moses in Del Rio.
The FBI, Department of Homeland Security Office of Inspector General (DHS OIG) and U.S. Customs and Border Protection Office of Professional Responsibility (CBP OPR) investigated this case. Assistant U.S. Attorney John Kennedy and Joshua Banister are prosecuting this case on behalf of the government.
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