Another victim of uncontrolled border
Jun. 23, 2007 12:00 AM
The trouble started when the first beer bottle came sailing out the car window. An undercover sheriff's deputy was driving east on Durango Street on Tuesday when he saw it tossed from the driver's window. Before it was over, eight beer bottles would go flying, the officer's SUV would be pushed into oncoming traffic and one innocent bystander - a mother of two - would be dead.Nanuma Lavulavu, 46, joins Chris Miller and Micheal Bolden and a long, sad parade of people killed because our government can't or won't do what it takes to get control of the border.
And the man accused of killing Lavulavu? He's made so many illegal treks into this country that we should name one of the trails through the Arizona desert after him.Five times he's been sent back to Mexico. Yet there he was Tuesday evening, on Durango.According to court records, Deputy Rob Kinnett was driving his unmarked SUV east near 27th Avenue a little before 7 p.m. Tuesday when he saw the Bud Light bottles flying from the car in front of him - first one, then another, then an entire six-pack. As he drew close to get the license plate number, the driver suddenly put the car in reverse, rammed him and took off. Kinnett, already on the phone with 911, turned around and was returning to the sheriff's station when he told investigators the car suddenly appeared in his rearview mirror, coming fast."The Taurus pulled up to the passenger side of Kinnett's Expedition and rammed him toward the center turn lane and into eastbound traffic," the report says. "Kinnett was able to gain control of his Expedition and continued westbound on Durango St. The Taurus then rammed Kinnett's Expedition again for a second time, forcing Kinnett's Expedition into the oncoming eastbound traffic."Specifically, head-on into Lavulavu's car. The driver accused of causing the crash, Guadalupe Perez-Bojorquez, 26, fled the scene and fought with Phoenix police after they found him hiding nearby, records say. A breath test put him at 0.16 percent, more than twice the legal limit for alcohol, and he had cocaine in his car, police said.He told police that he rammed the SUV because he suspected its driver was a cop and he didn't want to get caught.He would have experience at that.According to Immigration and Customs Enforcement records, Perez-Bojorquez is an undocumented immigrant who's been sent back to Mexico five times: once in 1997, twice in 1998, once in 2001 following an arrest for assaulting a police officer, and in 2002. Each time, he agreed to a voluntary departure, meaning his subsequent returns to this country were considered federal misdemeanors rather than felonies, said Vinnie Picard, an ICE spokesman. Re-entry after a deportation would be considered a felony, though even that likely wouldn't be prosecuted."Even with an order to deport, there's no magic necklace that goes on them that would prevent them from coming back across the border," Picard said. "When you're looking at hundreds of thousands of people, there's just no feasible way to imprison that many people for felony violations, or misdemeanor violations for that matter."Translation: They're coming and we can't do a darn thing about it.It's a sad statement but true, apparently.Which is why we need to lay down our arms, emerge from whatever particular foxhole we occupy in this illegal immigration fight and find a way finally to get control of the border. Now.It won't stop drunks from killing people. But it might give the feds a shot in the future, at least, at keeping out the people we want to keep out.The people we tried - and failed - five times to keep out.Reach Roberts at firstname.lastname@example.org or (602) 444-8635.