Deputy saves 11 undocumented persons from human trafficking ring

Monday, May 27, 2019- Press Release
A Bexar County Sheriff’s Office Deputy who was patrolling the area off of Rittiman Rd. and Goldfield where he observed a large group of both male and female subjects. When members of the group spotted the deputy, several individuals scattered, and others hid in some shrubbery nearby. Due to concerns that some sort of physical or sexual assault might have been occurring among the group, the deputy stopped to investigate.
Additionally, a nearby 18 wheeler and its driver were detained to determine if they were involved. The driver of that vehicle, a US citizen who also appears to be a registered sex offender from another state was detained, identified, and released after his vehicle was searched by consent and was cleared of wrongdoing for now.
It is believed that the entire group of persons (11) were undocumented from Mexico and are believed to be victims of a human trafficking or slavery ring.
The Sheriff’s Office called EMS to ensure that the victims did not require medical attention. The BCSO was told that the people had not been given food or water in over two days. Sheriff Salazar and the deputies used personal funds to purchase food and water for the group. Shoes were also provided to one young woman who was barefoot on the hot pavement.
Homeland Security and Investigations was called in to assist with further guidance, and took over the investigation.
After preliminary information was gathered from the individuals, the Bexar County Sheriff’s Office assisted with transporting them to the HSI field office for further investigation and determination of the needs of the group.
Attribute the following statement to Sheriff Javier Salazar.
“It’s a tragedy that these folks come here looking for a better life and, quite frankly, they’re preyed upon and taken advantage of—and they’re forced into modern day slavery. There is no doubt in my mind that the deputy’s actions helped saved the lives of several of these persons. A tragedy could well have been averted.”