June 8, 2016

Tucson Sector Border Patrol leads community outreach /to educate more than 6,000 students about dangers of smuggling

TUCSON–Tucson Sector Border Patrol agents, in collaboration with law enforcement officers from local, state, federal and tribal agencies delivered 64 Operation Detour presentations at 27 southern Arizona schools to more than 6,000 students during the 2015-2016 school year.

Operation Detour is an anti-smuggling educational program established in 2009 by the U.S. Border Patrol in south Texas to depict the horrors and tragedies which transpire when individuals and their families become involved with human or narcotics smuggling. The program uses videos, slide presentations and candid conversations to actively engage students in an open forum environment. Agents, officers and partner law enforcement personnel try to connect with students to warn them of the too-often tragedies associated with falling into the trap of getting involved with transnational smuggling organizations. 

Chief Patrol Agent Paul Beeson said Operation Detour enhances and strengthens the Border Patrol’s relationship with local communities.

“It is very important to deter our youth from getting involved in cross-border criminal activity which could ruin their lives by leading them down a path that more than likely ends with them in jail or even worse – losing their lives,” he said. “The program empowers students with additional knowledge to assist them with making smart and appropriate decisions if they should ever find themselves confronted with the lore of getting involved with risky and dangerous smuggling activity.”

The Tucson Sector Border Patrol strives to promote border security and keep communities safe through education and engagement through community outreach programs such as Operation Detour. Customs and Border Protection welcomes assistance from the community. Citizens can report suspicious activity to the Border Patrol and remain anonymous by calling 1-877-872-7435 toll free.