Earlier this afternoon, I entered into the Lukeville border crossing on the way into Mexico headed to Rocky Point. As I pulled up to the agent, he asked the basic questions that I’ve faced each time in the past. This time however, was much different–he asked me to pull over.
They detained me and escorted me to the office building and instructed me to sit in a specific seat. When I asked ‘on what grounds are you detaining me,’ the agent said something along the lines of ‘we are not detaining you, if you were being detained, you would be in handcuffs.’ Interestingly enough, the first definition of detain by Webster’s is “to hold or keep in or as if in custody <detained by the police for questioning>.” I could barely see the agents digging through every opening of my car. What I couldn’t see was what I was most concerned about and what I didn’t find out about until after they were finished. While I was not being detained, I chatted with some of the agents in the office. They said that there is a comment card that I can fill out if I want. I said sure. One of the questions ask if I requested to speak to a CBP supervisor. I thought that maybe it would be a good idea. I did and he explained that I was being detained so that I do not run away if they find something. He also said that they are doing this to protect my family.
About 30 minutes later, the agents came to me with a bunch of my business paperwork and questioned me about about the parts that I am currently working on as an independent mechanical design engineer. I had to explain all my sketches and notes to the agents. Then came the most upsetting question “Where do you have that gun that you have the picture of in your camera?” What possible motive do the agents have for going through my digital camera? Let alone looking at pictures from months ago? Yeah… I own a gun. I took pictures of it and posted them on the internet to try and sell it. I told them that the gun was in Georgia. And that’s why this entry features a gun, as opposed to the beautiful scenery of my past posts.
When I got back to my car, it was completely disheveled. Everything had been tossed. You name it, they went through it…. food, travel medication, backpacks, first aid kit, tool box, everything.
So enough rambling, but I feel completely violated. I’d like to know how going through my digital camera and engineering documents can possibly be protecting my family? I call it harassment.
Maybe it’s befitting that I’m spending the night in La Posada la Roca, one of the hangouts of Al Capone!