U.S. Customs and Border Protection has ordered medical checks on every child in its custody after an 8-year-old boy from Guatemala died, marking the second death of an immigrant child in the agency's care this month.
The CBP news release says the Department of Homeland Security is experiencing "a dramatic increase in unaccompanied children and family units arriving at our borders illegally or without authorization", and per law, holds such individuals at federal facilities until they are deported or released into the United States with a notice to appear in court.
Staff diagnosed him with a cold but later discovered a fever.
Alonzo was released with prescriptions for ibuprofen and an antibiotic, and taken with his dad, Agustin Gomez, to a holding facility at a highway checkpoint. The boy was returned to the same hospital after starting to vomit.
The New Mexico Office of the Medical Investigator has performed an autopsy on Felipe Gomez-Alonzo.
She said the family stopped hearing from Felipe's father on December 18, when he and the boy were detained.
An eight-year-old Guatemalan migrant boy dies hours after he and his father were detained by U-S border security agents.
Texan congressman Joaquin Castro called for a congressional investigation into the boy's death. Just 12 minutes before Christmas Day, and after 155 hours in United States custody, Felipe died, becoming the second child to die in USA custody this month.
Smugglers often charge less than half the price if a child goes along, knowing that migrants can turn themselves in to border agents and will soon be released.
DHS wouldn't say exactly how many children are in Border Patrol custody.
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"He told us that (Felipe) was fine all day, that he was playing with other children".
US Customs and Border Protection did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the flu diagnosis.
"Don't get sick on me, " she said her father told him gently.
Correa supported the announced move by CBP to begin a full review of its policies regarding "the care and custody of children under the 10 at intake and beyond 24 hours in custody", saying a broader mindshift in the way migrants are perceived by Border Patrol agents and politicians is long overdue. Felipe was the second Guatemalan child to die in government custody in three weeks.
"It is now clear that migrants, particularly children, are increasingly facing medical challenges and harboring illness caused by their long and unsafe journey", said Nielsen, who announced that she will travel to the border later this week to review medical screenings and Border Patrol stations.
December 20: They were transferred to El Paso Border Patrol Station.
Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen says she's ordered "extraordinary protective measures" after the death of an 8-year-old Guatemalan child in immigration custody.
"I am urgently demanding more details, but the Trump administration must be held accountable for this child's death and all the lives they have put in danger with their intentional chaos and disregard for human life", he added.
The boy's death came on the same day that Jakelin Caal, a Guatemalan girl who died in U.S. custody, was buried.
But shortly after being detained by USA border agents, she developed a high fever and died of shock from sepsis on December 8.