According to a House Oversight and Reform Committee report, border patrol agents discovered in 2019 to be part of a racist private Facebook group received minimal discipline, reports the New York Times. Despite a disciplinary board recommending two dozen firings, most of the agents received nothing more than suspensions and letters of reprimand, only two were actually fired, and one who posted some of the most offensive images was allowed to retire with disability and benefits.
Soime 60 employees were found to have violated the agency’s code of conduct after posting offensive images and memes, including one questioning whether a photograph of a dead migrant father and child was staged, and obscenely doctored pictures of Hispanic lawmakers. More than 40 were suspended without pay; 12 got letters of reprimand; and three were given other punishments, such as suspension with pay. 62 of the allegations were found to be unsubstantiated. The Department of Homeland Security said there was a department-wide review to identify and end “intolerable prejudice,” as well as to change policies and training. Critics have pointed to the group of offending officers as evidence of a deep-rooted culture within the Border Patrol that has led to the regular debasement of migrants. The same office responsible for overseeing investigations related to the 2019 Facebook group, called “I’m 10-15” — a reference to a law enforcement code for undocumented immigrants in custody — is also conducting the Del Rio inquiry.