An Associated Press video released over the weekend shows a new angle on the incident involving a Del Rio Sector Horse Patrol Unit’s encounter with Haitian migrants. The video angle shows the agents did not strike the migrants. Instead, they used horses to turn back the migrants attempting to cross the Rio Grande.
AP journalist Sarah Blake Morgan tweeted a video taken from the middle of the Rio Grand showing three horse-mounted Border Patrol agents attempting to block a group of Haitian migrants from entering the U.S.
Sorting through my footage from the border. I was in the river during the viral incident between a Haitian migrant and mounted CBP agent. It’s shaky – but here’s what I captured. pic.twitter.com/fnvxSU83tO
— Sarah Blake Morgan (@StorytellerSBM) September 24, 2021
The video shows the migrants attempting to enter the U.S. after crossing the Rio Grande. The agents use their horses to control the migrants to turn them back.
At one point, one of the agents chases the migrant seen in multiple photos. While reports claim the agent whipped or “strapped” the migrant, the video shows the agent grabbing the migrant and turning him around toward the river.
The agents in this video do not appear to have struck any of the migrants with reins.
The video provides additional confirmation to the statement from photographer Paul Ratje who shot many of the photos now at the center of the dust-up. Ratje told KTSM NBC9 that he “didn’t ever see [the agents]whip anybody. ”
He was swinging [the reins], but I didn’t see him actually whip someone with it,” the photographer stated. He took the infamous photos that have “really been misconstrued” from the Mexican side of the river.
Despite any reported evidence of agents on horseback striking migrants, the Department of Homeland Security and the White House ordered the sector to stop utilizing the horse teams.
Among those who apparently misconstrued the images is President Joe Biden. “To see people treated like they did, horses running them over and people getting strapped, it’s outrageous I promise you those people will pay,” the president said during a press conference on Friday.
Vice President Kamala Harris also offered her conclusions on ABC’s The View. “I was outraged by it … It was horrible and deeply troubling. There’s been now an investigation that is being conducted which I fully support, and there needs be consequences and accountability.”
Horse Patrol Units of the U.S. Border Patrol have a long history of carrying out migrant rescues in remote and hazardous terrains all along the southwest border.