Yesterday, the Supreme Court issued a ruling that forbids the Mexican Parents of a teen who was killed by a Border Patrol agent from suing that agent.
The court ruled that the fatal shooting was by definition an “international incident,” and therefore must be handled by legislators, as the Constitution outlines.
Open borders advocates were upset with the loss of the end-around attempt to bring a lawsuit against a Border Patrol agent. The incident occurred during Obama’s reign in office, in 2010, when the agent fired from the U.S. side of the boundary separating El Paso, Texas, from Juarez, Mexico.
An investigation by American authorities concluded that Mesa fired in self-defense in response to smugglers who were throwing rocks at him, although it found no evidence that Hernández [The boy] threw anything at the agent.
Mexican prosecutors charged Mesa with murder. When the U.S. refused an extradition request, the parents sued. American courts threw their case out, however, concluding that the Constitution’s protection against excessive force did not apply to someone outside the United States.
Writing for the Supreme Court’s five-member conservative majority, Justice Samuel Alito said the court would not extend the reach of federal law into claims against U.S. law enforcement actions that have effects in other countries.
“A cross-border shooting is by definition an international incident,” Alito wrote, calling for a diplomatic solution, not a legal one. He said it is up to Congress, not the courts, to decide the scope of civil rights law in such contexts.
In a dissent for the court’s four more liberal members, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg said the lawsuit should have been allowed because the agent was on U.S. soil when he fired the shot.