Approximately 15,000 immigrant children are being held in government custody, and shelters are reportedly reaching capacity.
Now it has been reported that a 7-Year-Old Girl from Guatemala died of dehydration, while in custody of the U.S. Border Patrol.
After she was taken into U.S. Customs and Border Patrol custody, a seven-year-old girl from Guatemala died of dehydration and shock. Congressional Democrats are demanding answers from CBP.
The child was identified on Friday as Jakelin Caal Maquin, in a statement by CBP Commissioner Kevin K. McAleenan. She and her father were part of a group of 163 people seeking asylum who crossed the southern border into the U.S.
They approached U.S. agents on Dec. 6 to turn themselves in and were detained by immigration authorities in New Mexico.
According to CBP records, on Dec. 7, the girl started having seizures, and emergency responders measured her body temperature at 105.7 degrees. She was taken to El Paso children's hospital. She died at 12:35 a.m. on Dec. 8.
"Border Patrol Agents, including trained Emergency Medical Technicians, did everything in their power to provide emergency medical assistance for Jakelin Caal Maquin," McAleenan said. "The agents involved are deeply affected and empathize with the father over the loss of his daughter."
According to CBP's statement, "Upon apprehension [on Dec. 6] the Border Patrol Agent conducted an initial screening" and it "revealed no evidence of health issues" and Jakelin's father allegedly claimed she was in good health.
The CBP also said, "the aliens" had access to food, water, and restrooms.
But, during the time she was detained, her condition deteriorated without border agents noticing. The Department of Homeland Security is conducting an investigation.
McAleenan told the Senate Judiciary Committee on Tuesday that using tear gas on Nov. 25 to stop a mass border crossing of refugees was a justified response to an "assaultive" crowd.
However, in his testimony, he left out that Jakelin died on Dec. 8 of dehydration. McAleenan said the child's death wasn't announced, "Out of respect to the family."
#USA Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen said the death of a 7-year-old girl in the custody of U.S. Border Patrol “is a very sad example of the dangers” migrants face when they try to illegally enter America - The adults in our country failed you. My grandson is 7 also. He could have been your friend and played with you. You died while #USA imprisoned you. Your death should burn a fire inside all of us that will continue until every child is free again. You are also a granddaughter, Jakelin.
Federal officials say Jakelin who died after being detained had spent days crossing desert terrain without food or water. But Her father says she was in good health when they surrendered at the border.
Every #Hispanic or #Latino should take a stand as a real force to be reckoned with. We are over 55 million strong and must reject this discrimination against our brothers and sisters. Join us on @Facebook #HispanosUnidosDeAmerica
Los Hispanos Unidos Jamas Seremos Vencidos #VivaLaRaza #USA Guatemalan foreign ministry official identifies the 7-year-old migrant girl who died in U.S. Border Patrol custody as Jackeline Caal. Migrant girl's family disputes official story