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California Briefing / SAN DIEGO

Man is wounded by border agent

August 14, 2008|From the Associated Press

A U.S. Border Patrol agent shot and wounded a man as agents clashed with a group of rock-throwing assailants, marking the latest confrontation along a violent stretch of the U.S.-Mexico border, authorities said Wednesday.

Edgar Israel Ortega Chavez, 22, was in stable condition after being shot in the left buttock Tuesday night, according to a spokesman for Hospital General in Tijuana who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to publicly discuss the matter.

Ortega was found by Mexican authorities on a dirt bank above the spot where the border crosses the dry, concrete-lined Tijuana River basin, Tijuana police said in a news release. San Diego police said the shooter was a 10-year Border Patrol veteran but did not release his name.

The Border Patrol said the agent feared getting struck by a rock, but the shooting drew swift criticism from Mexican authorities. "This incident is of great concern to the government of Mexico," said Remedios Gomez Arnau, the consul general in San Diego. "Under no circumstances would it be justified to shoot lethal or non- lethal objects to the Mexican side of the border."

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