A RANGE OF REALITY ON THE ARIZONA-MEXICO BORDER; adapted from a CCIPRA update from August 15, 2010 (CCIPRA = Cochise County Individual and Property Rights Association).


On August 1, 2010, in Prince William County, Virginia, a drunk alcoholic drove into an oncoming car, killing one nun and injuring two. So far, just another routine drunk driving story.

But the story got national attention for two reasons.
-- 1, The driver was an illegal alien (from Bolivia), in the second year of deportation proceedings against him -- proceedings which consisted of nothing but canceled hearings.
-- 2, Since 2007 -- over 3 years ago -- Prince William County has had an "ask about immigration status" resolution like Arizona's SB 1070.

There's an O. Henry twist to the story: the driver was being represented in the deportation proceedings by a legal arm of Catholic Charities.  See
But that didn't come out until August 12.


On August 1, an illegal alien from Bolivia named Carlos Martinelly Montano (Martinelly with a "y," & sometimes the last names are hyphenated) drove into oncoming traffic and caused a car crash that killed one nun and injured two others.

CBS, at
says Montano "is charged with drunken driving, involuntary manslaughter and felony driving on a revoked license after his car crossed a median Sunday morning and struck a car carrying three nuns. Sister Denise Mosier, 66, was pronounced dead at the scene ...."  Montano had been "arrested twice before and charged with drunk driving, and has other arrests for other traffic-related offenses."

TV station WUSA says at
that Montano "used several social security numbers and aliases over the years."

The Washington Post, at
reports that Montano's family "entered the United States illegally in 1996, when [Montano] was 8 .... In 2007, [they] got work permits from ... Homeland Security .... [A] spokesman for the temporary employment agency ... said [Montano] 'successfully cleared the ... verification process and ... was eligible for employment in the U.S.'"  However, "work permits do not confer legal status to undocumented immigrants.... ' In fact, all the government is saying to them is:  "You have what appears on its face to be a valid petition for legal residency.  So while we're trying to decide that, we'll let you work."'"

Deportation proceedings against Montano began in October 2008, after his second drunk driving arrest.  The Post says Montano "was released on his own recognizance .... The hearing was set for April 21, 2009, then postponed to May 7, 2009, then delayed until Dec. 3, 2009, then rescheduled for Aug. 19 [2010]."  In other words, by the time Montano killed the nun, THREE hearings had been cancelled and a FOURTH hearing was a few weeks away. (And now Montano's legal team from Catholic Charities says the fourth hearing will be delayed until the criminal case is over.)

Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano says the delay is a mystery to her.  She asked at a press conference "Why is it that this individual was driving? ... Why did the removal process take so long?"  However, Napolitano's statements are poor guides to the facts. She promised more National Guard troops on Arizona's border by August 1; but later a public relations minion said we had all "overinterpreted" Napolitano's words. It's hard to take Napolitano at face value when she uses a press agent to explain that we shouldn't believe our lying ears.


An Associated Press story which ran in the Arizona Daily Star on Monday, August 9 at
says that in July 2007, Prince William County passed a resolution "requiring police to determine the immigration status of all people arrested on suspicion of violating state or local laws."  That story isn't quite correct.

Actually, the 2007 resolution instructed police "to inquire into the citizenship or immigration status of persons who are lawfully detained for a violation of state or local law ...."  A full arrest was not required.  See the Prince William County website at

On Sunday, August 15, an article in the Sierra Vista Herald at
says "Two months later [that is, after July 2007], the law was repealed".  However, the current Prince William County website says that in April 2008, about nine months after the resolution was passed, the "requirements regarding mandated pre-arrest immigration inquiries ... were suspended" and replaced by a new policy allowing the inquiries of anyone "under physical custodial arrest for a violation of state or local law."

That is like one part of Arizona's SB 1070. The original version of SB 1070 allowed the inquiries upon any police "contact" with a person; the amendment, passed a week later, allows the inquiries upon "any lawful stop, detention or arrest."  That is one of the parts of SB 1070 that were put on hold pending the outcome of the federal lawsuit against SB 1070.

If the requirement is unConstitutional when Arizona imposes it, it's unConstitutional when Prince William County imposes it.  So why haven't the feds sued Prince William County?

Possibly because P.W. County largely IS feds.  P.W. County is in the D.C. metro area, with many homes for federal employees who work in D.C.

And possibly because P.W. County's feds are RICH.  P.W. County is the 14th richest county in the U.S.  Half the households in P.W. County earn over $90,000 a year -- almost triple the halfway point in Cochise County (check out Wikipedia).  And a USA Today article at
reports that over the past nine years, "federal employees' average compensation has grown to more than double what private sector workers earn ...."

No matter what happens in places like Cochise County, people in P.W. County will -- at least until the old adage that "money talks" is repealed -- insist that their own homes and lives be protected.

On August 2, 2010, Virginia's Attorney General even "issued an advisory opinion concluding that police have the authority to inquire into the immigration status of any person stopped or arrested ...."  See


Prince William County is an example of the feds allowing "patchwork" immigration enforcement.

The federal government knows about the patchwork enforcement, because P. W. County is not just next door to D.C., it's full of people who work for the federal government in D.C.  Yet in the case against Arizona, the feds argue, hypocritically, that our country cannot have a "patchwork of immigration enforcement."

"Sanctuary cities" have nullified federal immigration law.  San Francisco is the most famous, but there are many more.  A list is at
(Note that the immigration patchwork was not created by the current administration.  San Francisco became a "sanctuary city" in October 1989, early in Bush I's term.  Prince William County passed its policy in 2007, when Bush II had over a year left in his term.)

In the ongoing case, Arizona can argue about "selective enforcement" or "selective prosecution," which is what's happening to us. For the basic ideas, see

This is hardly a new thought.  For instance, on July 29, USA Today ran a discussion between conservative and liberal columnists, at
in which the conservative said "It's funny that the administration has had nothing to say about the 'sanctuary cities,' like San Francisco, presided over mostly by Democratic mayors. We don't want a 'patchwork' of immigration laws, unless the patches fit into our open-borders quilt.  Selective enforcement mocks the law." The liberal dodged, but the feds can't dodge in court.


The feds aren't going to protect the border, they'll just go through the motions.  There are several apparent reasons why Arizona doesn't matter much to the people at the center of power.  Arizona doesn't have many electoral votes; lots of people are doing all they can to make the border meaningless (think NAFTA); and the "War On Drugs" has made drug dealing so profitable that many immensely rich people are doing what they can to keep the status quo -- which includes a border like a sieve.

Arizona's state government won't help; sleazy pols like Russell Pearce will push badly written laws and work like the devil to get publicity, but they'll ignore the real needs of border counties.  So will Joe Arpaio, the always-embarrassing lover of sadism in central Arizona, far from the border.  Cochise County citizens are, for all practical purposes, on their own.

Our County Supervisors could do a lot; they declared a border emergency five years ago, giving them immense power, but the Supes won't even talk about using that power.  There's no guarantee that the Supes can find anything effective to do -- but it's certain that they can't succeed if they never try.  At least one Supe won't discuss using the power on the basis that appointed deputy county attorney Britt Hanson says the County might be sued if it actually did anything -- as if Hanson knows in advance every idea that citizens might come up with, if the Supes would bother to listen.

The citizens of Cochise County have the right to a little help from their County government.  The Supes had better start trying to solve the problem.  If they let it get much worse, they may never be able to ride the tiger of citizens protecting themselves.


Our friend Bob Kern has forwarded around a letter from Ed Ashurst, whose ranch is near the Krentz ranch. The full text is at
(incidentally, that federalobserver is a VERY interesting site) and here are a FEW of the important statements in the letter:
    "... I live on the ranch bordering the Krentz ranch to the east and north.  I can see the Krentz home looking out of my front door approximately 10 miles away.  The day after Rob's death I was involved in tracking the outlaw into Mexico. I saw the outlaw's footprints where he crossed the border fence.  I mention this to say I feel that I'm qualified to speak about current border issues.
    "My home has been broken into twice.  My son's home has been broken into also and between us we have had between twenty and thirty thousand dollars worth of stuff stolen ....  A guest house here on the ranch has been broken into so many times we quit counting....
    "... not long after Rob Krentz's death, Fox news (channel 10 in Phoenix AZ) contacted me and expressed interest in coming down and doing a news story ....  I asked for assistance from six other neighboring ranchers and businessmen....  Together we made a map of the area ... from the southeastern corner of AZ going west about 20 miles ... and going north about 30 miles .... On this map we made marks recording violations to United States law committed by illegal aliens ... that we knew had happened first hand, many of which we had witnessed ... in the last several years.
    "The sum total of what we recorded is this:
    -- The arrest or capture of 40 illegal in one bunch - 40 (we didn't bother with the countless smaller groups)
    -- Loads of Marijuana found and captured - 213
    -- Dangerous encounters with illegal aliens - 132 (assault, burglaries, forced entries, etc.)
    -- Dead illegal aliens found by civilians - 16
    -- High speed vehicle chases between dope haulers and law enforcement - 14
    -- Illegal aliens spotted with firearms - 12
    -- Fires started by illegal aliens - 9
    -- Over 100,000 acres burned with the cost to taxpayers of $40,000,000....
    -- Outlandish incidents - 4 (Example:  One bachelor in the Portal area was burglarized around 100 times.  He finally took all his valuables and put them in a steel vault and welded the door shut. He then moved out of his house into a shed hoping the illegal aliens would leave him alone.  They did not and he finally abandoned his property.  Another outlandish event ... outlaws stole a brand new Caterpillar motor grader ... and drove south through the border fence [with the blade down all the way!] never to be seen again....)
    -- Financial losses to private sector – $100,000,000.00 (... losses in wildlife habitat - immeasurable)
    -- ... the murder of Rob Krentz ....
    "... Within this area, there [are] perhaps 600 people .... No less than 80% ... have been burglarized or otherwise molested by illegal aliens....
    "... As early as February of 1999 Sheriff Larry Dever warned ... at a town hall meeting ... that the Sinaloa Cartel was moving into the Douglas-Agua Prieta area ....
    "... At night people in Douglas are hearing machine gun fire from Agua Prieta south of the border fence.
    "... the situation in Agua Prieta has deteriorated dramatically in recent months.  The good people are told to look the other way 'or else.' ...
    "... The situation on the border isn't just about a few workers walking north.  It has everything to do with big business.  Billions of dollars are being made trafficking humans, drugs, and contraband across the International Boundary....
    "... There are only two industries of any significance in Douglas, AZ:  law enforcement ... and the illegal trafficking ....  These two industries feed on each other, and the powers that be seem happy with the situation...."

The entire letter is definitely worth reading, and passing on to people who believe that lower crime numbers in Phoenix mean anything in Cochise County.


From September 2008, here's a fine piece of journalism by Leo Banks, at

This piece details some crimes from 2008, and describes their long-lasting effects:  "Already, residents have had to make room in their lives for everything the traffickers bring with them -- suspicion, constant watchfulness, vandalism and break-ins. As a matter of course, few people dare leave their homes without a sitter.  Alex Stone, a helicopter specialist for the Forest Service who owns a house near Portal, on the east side of the Chiricahuas, says flatly, 'If you leave your house empty, it will be occupied.'"

If reporters based in the interior of the country, or in New York, L.A. or D.C., would report on the long-term effects of coping with that kind of stress, perhaps the rest of the country might understand our priorities a little better.

(Incidentally, if you go to the Tucson Weekly website and look for more by Leo Banks, you will find a lot worth reading.)


Dever's statement is as valid now as it was four years ago.  And Cochise County remains as neglected now as it was then.  Thanks for nothing, Congress.

Here's Dever's statement:
    "I was here in 1997 testifying before the Foreign Relations Committee on border violence, as well, and it seems like we are still pretty much mired in the same muck that we were at that time, or if anything it is a little bit worse.
    "You have heard some interesting testimony about some suggested needs and methods of trying to mitigate the violence that is going on down there.  I would just like to take a moment and read to you from Arizona Sheriffs magazine a quote from the Border Patrol chief of the Tucson sector, at that time Chief Jerald Jondall.
    "He said, 'Within the last year, we have been mandated by Congress to gain control of that border, and we are going to do that along the southern border, whether it is narcotics, illegal aliens, terrorists, criminals, or whatever.'
    "That ... is dated autumn of 1987.  I don't need to tell you at what juncture we are at today.  1987 was the year that we first organized the joint narcotics task force in Cochise County in response to the cocaine trade that had entered that part of the country.  Cocaine Alley was the common name for that particular corridor.
    "At that time, there were no DEA agents in Cochise County.  There was no FBI.  The Customs Office of Enforcement had maybe 4 agents, and Border Patrol possibly a total of 100.  Today, the FBI is there, DEA is there, Customs has increased manyfold, and there are well over 1,200 Border Patrol agents stationed in Cochise County.  Yet, the violence continues to increase ... and whether that is because of the law enforcement presence or in spite of it, nobody can dispute that it has markedly increased.
    "Twenty to 25 years ago, working along the border in drug interdiction, we actually jumped smugglers right on the fence and they would just simply give up.  Some of them would run back into Mexico, but they always dropped their contraband and there was no fight to be had.  Today, it is just the opposite.  We anticipate that we will be in a fight, a very violent confrontation in every interdiction effort, with running gun battles down congested public roadways, populated residential areas, high-speed chases.
    "[Another speaker] talked earlier about the prosecution of two smugglers who caused a very serious accident, a fatal accident in Sierra Vista just recently, driving recklessly in an overloaded truck.  Most of the vehicles that are used to transport illegals are, in fact, stolen from the Tucson and Phoenix areas.  They are overloaded and their drivers are inexperienced.
    "The people-smuggling culture is marked by little, if any, value for life or respect for persons or property. One study estimates that 80% of all illegal aliens that enter this country become victims of crime before they ever get here, and that those atrocities continue after they cross the border.
    "We have come across an interesting situation, where smugglers mark their trails or locations where rape has occurred of one of the illegal aliens being smuggled as a sign to others that they must cooperate with the smuggler.  They hang women's undergarments in the tree to mark that location as a signal of their prowess and their dominance in the smuggling environment.
    "I mentioned running gun battles, fleeing felons, placing law enforcement officers at great risk, as well as the general public.  I could tell you of many carjackings.  I was counseled by staff of a Congressman yesterday that I shouldn't talk too much about specific examples of carjackings because it is so commonplace in the Washington area that it wouldn't carry much weight.  Well, sir, you will forgive me, but that is just not acceptable in my environment and the people that I work for.  If it becomes commonplace there, it certainly will be a sad day and a sad situation.
    "We desperately need your attention and your assistance. You have heard today about several Federal initiatives and joint initiatives.  I would just like to emphasize that every Federal initiative, every strategy that is implemented at the Federal level has a local consequence, and those consequences aren't always considered in the planning process.  I would encourage whatever influence or requirement that can be included in funding that would require, in fact, that local participation be considered so that those consequences will be totally understood before they are implemented."

Apparently the few Cochise County officials who are willing to speak sense don't matter.  D.C. chooses not to hear.