Texas Officials Take Control and Shut Down Eagle Pass Park

Texas state officials seized control of a 47-acre municipal park along the Rio Grande River in Eagle Pass and closed it to stem the flow of illegal immigration on Thursday, by order of GOP Gov. Greg Abbott.

Texas National guardsmen fenced off Shelby Park and blocked the gates with two Humvees.

The seizure was done without the city’s consent. Eagle Pass Mayor Rolando Salinas said he was informed by an official with the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) on Wednesday night of the impending move. Salinas said he was told the park would be closed to prevent illegal crossings across the Rio Grande into Texas.

“This is not something that the city wanted, requested, asked for,” Salinas said Thursday at a news conference. “This is something that caught us by surprise.”

A spokesperson for Abbott pointed to the governor’s renewal last month of an emergency Border Disaster Declaration.

“Texas will continue to deploy Texas National Guard soldiers, DPS troopers, and more barriers, utilizing every tool and strategy to respond to President [Joe] Biden’s ongoing border crisis,” spokesperson Renae Eze said in a statement sent to media outlets.

Salinas said at the news conference that DPS officials and Texas National guardsmen were preventing private citizens, city officials as well as federal Border Patrol officers from entering the park.

Salinas in June agreed with DPS to declare the park private property so that state troopers could arrest illegals for trespassing, but he did it without approval from the city council. Salinas and the city council rescinded that agreement in August. Salinas re-established that agreement in September after a massive surge in migrant crossings, according to the Dallas Morning News.

House Speaker Mike Johnson, R-La., led a contingent of 65 Republican lawmakers on a trip to the southern border last week, which included a tour of Eagle Pass, which has been a hotbed for illegal crossings and the political epicenter of the ongoing border situation. Abbott has installed razor wire and his floating border barrier of buoys at Eagle Pass as part of Operation Lone Star, setting off multiple lawsuits by the Department of Justice.

“With that razor wire, it keeps them away from our city and keeps our city safe,” Eagle Pass Fire Chief Manuel Mello III testified Thursday on Capitol Hill at a House subcommittee hearing.

Mark Swanson |

Mark Swanson, a Newsmax writer and editor, has nearly three decades of experience covering news, culture and politics.

© 2024 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

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