A former Border Patrol agent criticized the internal culture of the federal agency, accusing it of promoting an environment of abuse and corruption. Since leaving the agency in 2001, Jenn Budd has become an advocate for migrants and holds her former employer to account.
“It took me about 15 years to really think about what I had done at the agency,” Budd told CBSN anchor Lana Zak on Wednesday. “The policies that he was enforcing, the laws that he was enforcing. Honestly, I had a lot of PTSD when I was in the Border Patrol.”
Budd recently detailed her experience in the Border Patrol to the San Diego Union-Tribune, where she described being raped by a colleague and constantly retaliating for her gender.
“The reality of what the Border Patrol culture is is very different from what they portray to the outside world,” he said. “Frankly, I don’t see how anyone can hear what this agency is saying when. For me, that’s a line that should never have been crossed and I don’t trust them. ”
Budd said his turning point was when he was shot during a night patrol along the US-Mexico border. The incident occurred after she investigated a high-ranking agent for narcotics smuggling. After calling for backup, the agent introduced himself and asked if he had “learned my lesson,” Budd said.
“It was obvious to me that he organized it, but I don’t know who was doing the shooting,” Budd said.
Budd said the Border Patrol leadership would not allow him to turn the agent over to the FBI or the Drug Enforcement Agency over the smuggling allegations. She says she was offered a promotion instead that she declined. He resigned after six years at the agency.
“That fact is that even yours [Customs and Border Protection] Internal affairs commissioner James Tomsheck said that agency is the most corrupt in the United States. They have a narcissistic mindset. They refuse to admit any of the mistakes, they claim they are not racist, they are not sexist, they do not have a culture of rape, “Budd said.
The border agency removed Tomsheck from his post in 2014 amid criticism that he failed to investigate allegations of improper use of force by border agents. Tomsheck said his efforts to investigate abuse and corruption were hampered by the agency, which said it believed they were above the law.
Customs and Border Protection rejected Budd’s characterizations.
“Allegations of abuse and corruption are taken very seriously, as the slightest indication erodes public confidence and subverts the ability of the Border Patrol to effectively carry out its mission,” said an agency statement.