The Department of Homeland Security claimed in a statement Friday that the 7-year-old migrant girl who died in their custody was not ill…
The Department of Homeland Security claimed in a statement Friday that the 7-year-old migrant girl who died in their custody was not ill upon an initial screening and was offered food and water.
The story of the young girl from Guatemala exploded on Thursday after The Washington Post reported that she died of dehydration shortly after Border Patrol took custody of her and her father, who entered the country illegally. WaPo’s headline suggested that Border Patrol bore responsibility in the child’s death, but the Department of Homeland Security is now disputing that characterization.
U. S. Customs and Border Protection confirmed that the child died last week approximately eight hours after she was taken into custody. Her father reportedly told Border Patrol agents that the child had not had anything to eat or drink in days.
The father and daughter, identified by a Guatemalan official as Nery Caal and Jackeline Caal, crossed the U. S. border into New Mexico in a remote location 90 miles from the nearest Border Patrol station.
The Washington Post’s initial report noted that they were not aware of any provisions offered to the family when they were first taken into custody.
“Food and water are typically provided to migrants in Border Patrol custody, and it wasn’t immediately clear Thursday if the girl received provisions and a medical exam before the onset of seizures,” WaPo said.
DHS claims in their statement, however, that they interviewed the Caal family and offered them food and water.

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