Working for logical immigation reform based on a stable population, a recognition of the finite nature of our natural resources and the adverse impact of continued growth on our quality of life, standard of living, national interest, character, language, sovereignty and the rule of law. Pushing back and countering the disloyal elements in American society and the anti-American rhetoric of the leftwing illegal alien lobbies. In a debate, when your opponents turn to name calling, it's a good sign you've already won.

Monday, January 19, 2009

The Sad Affair of Ramos and Campean

The sad cases of Ignacio Ramos and Jose Campean, ex-Border Patrol agents, came to a conclusion today with the last minute commutation of their sentences by President Bush on his last day in office. About two years ago, a federal jury had convicted the pair on five out of six criminal charges of assault, obstruction of justice, and civil rights violations after the three holdout jurors finally capitulated and agreed to a guilty verdict. Ramos and Campean were their own worst enemies in this affair. They failed to follow procedures which required that the incident be promptly reported since shots were fired. They then compounded this error of judgment by destroying or obscuring some evidence of their activities and then lying about those activities and the circumstances involved. The inconsistencies in their subsequent statements and oral testimonies compromised the slim chance they might have had for acquittal. Had they adhered to procedures and been open and truthful in the aftermath, these agents might have escaped with an administrative reprimand or dismissal rather than prison time. After being sentenced to 10-11 years in federal prison, although the judge in the case had no leeway, the prosecutor agreed with the assessment that the sentence was way too harsh.
According to the details of the case, Campean attempted to use the butt of his shotgun on the miscreant drug runner, Macaria Aldrete-Davila, but fell down and fell into a ditch in the process as Aldrete-Davila fled back to Mexico as Campean fired 14 shots to no avail. Ramos, a marksman, showed up at that point and fired one shot at the fleeing drug runner, hitting him in the groin. Campean proceeded to gather up his spent cartridges and threw them into the ditch. They both thought that was the end of it since the suspected drug runner had escaped to Mexico. They inspected his vehicle and found a large quantity of marijuana as they expected they would. When their supervisor showed up, they glossed over the incident and disclosed none of the details. More or less by accident, the circumstances were disclosed to another agent and the ensuing investigation led to Ramos’ and Campean’s conviction. During his stay in federal prison Ramos, of the pair asked to be released into the general prison population while Campean remained in solitary confinement in a 7 by 13 foot cell. Ramos was immediately set upon by five Hispanic inmates who shouted, “Maten a la Migra”, “Kill the Border Patrol”.
The media, especially Lou Dobbs, made a cause célèbre of the Ramos-Campean case often omitting some of the incriminating details. Congressmen and citizens picked up on it and let be known that, in spite of Dobb’s omissions, they believed the lengthy sentences to be a miscarriage of justice, not because Ramos-Campean were innocent, but because the sentence was not commensurate with the offense which depended mostly on the testimony of a drug runner who is now in jail. Bush, chintzy to the end only commuted the sentences of these men who have lost everything and who will be convicted felons for the rest of their lives unless a more benevolent president comes along who has a greater appreciation the men and women of the Border Patrol who put their lives on the line at the increasingly violent border.


pcorn54 said...

Ultima, All these two buffoons have "lost" is two years of their lives, nothing more.

Their "supporters" have "contributed" close to half a million dollars to their cause. What hasn't been stolen or kept for "administrative expenses" has been given to the family.

They've lived well under the circumstances.

Patty Compean has had the funds to fly to Ohio during each visitation period and travel around the country promoting these two "heroes".

WND, whose "reporting" has always been biased is already reporting that Lou Dobbs, Glenn Beck and others want to be there for the "reunion".

They are already asking the wives when they will sue the government.

The rabid right will attempt to make celebrities out of these two felons and that is what is sad about the whole thing.

Anonymous said...

They were tried for a paperwork violation and "tampering with evidence' (they picked up their shell-casings), not for shooting the smuggler in the butt.

And, the one that shot the smuggler did so after he came over a ridge and saw another agent on the ground- presumably assaulted by the smuggler.....

What would you do?

It's a common occurrence along the border, and was an average day for them. They were made example of, and still are, no more or less.

ultima said...

It sets a wrong example no matter how you view it. Perhaps buffoons is the right word for them but I guess the border patrol like the army has to hire whoever will do the dirty work and put their lives in danger. This may be a very good lesson for the other members of the BP, i.e. follow the rules and tell the truth -- it's easier to remember.

Still I believe these agents had probably cause regarding the drugs even though they had not discovered them yet. I'm not so sure anyone would so easily dismiss the lost of two years of their lives. Moreover, as felons, they may have a few other problems for the rest of their lives in getting employment, etc.

Since both men and their families probably feel strongly that the wrong people were jailed, I not surprised that they are going to get as much out of it as they can. I wonder what Obama is using with all the extra money he collected during the campaign. I'm certain he's not returning it.

I don't consider these men heroes just bumblers who made some bad choices. The original sentence was way to severe.

Given the drug wars on the border and all the murders in border towns, I have been an advocate of hot pursuit and lethal force as changes in the rules of engagement so agents will never have to be incarcerated for shooting a drug runner regardless of the circumstances.

I'm not surprised some of the pundit blowhards have made as much as they could out of this incident. That's entertainment like Jerry Springer, et al.

These families should have the good sense to tell Dobbs and company to butt out.