Among a group of 13 undocumented immigrants apprehended by U.S. Border Patrol agents Monday was a one-year-old needing medical attention after a smuggler struck the baby in the head to silence it.
Agents said the group was caught crossing the Rio Grande south of Granjeno, Texas. The infant's mother, from Honduras, said that before they crossed the border, the child was crying and inconsolable. She said one of the smugglers struck the child in the head with a flashlight to make the child be quiet.
"This incident highlights how these callous smugglers have no regard for the safety or well-being of the people they bring into the country," said Rio Grande Valley Sector Chief Patrol Agent Manuel Padilla, Jr. "In the human smuggling trade, people are viewed as a commodity with a cash value that can be traded, exploited or discarded as needed."
The mother and her child were taken to the hospital for a medical evaluation and cleared by medical staff before their release.
The U.S. Border Patrol encourages citizens to report any suspicious activity they see at 1-800-863-9382.