Things That Matter

Senior Border Patrol Officer Gets To Retire After Allegedly Kidnapping And Sexually Assaulting Another Agent

On July 10, former senior Border Patrol agent Gus Zamora, 51, was arrested in Tuscon for sexually assaulting a junior agent. Zamora’s wife is Gloria Chavez, one of the agency’s highest-ranked female officers. Three weeks after he was indicted by a Pima County grand jury, the agency took the only action it has thus far: it allowed him to retire from the agency three weeks after being arrested. Customs and Border Protection defended its actions by telling The New York Times, it “holds its employees accountable and expects the entire workforce to adhere to the agency’s standards of conduct.” Zamora attended a pretrial hearing at the Arizona Superior Court in Tucson. He pleaded not guilty.

The victim, identified as R.W. in court documents, told police that she looked up to Zamora as a mentor, given their ten-year age difference and his seniority. Over the years, R.W. had ignored some of his advances, asserting her desire to remain friends. The night of the assault, they met up for dinner and Zamora bought her so many tequila shots, video surveillance shows her falling to her knees as Zamora brought her back to his hotel room where he would later sexually assault her.

Before their dinner, Zamora texted her to ask if she “dressed up” for him, according to The New York Times.

Credit: customsborder / Instagram

According to The New York Times, Zamora bought them five rounds of tequila shots, and at one point, she moved away from him after he placed his hand on her left thigh. The Daily Mail reports that Zamora told investigators that he offered R.W. a ride home, to which she declined, saying she didn’t want to be alone. Zamora alleges that she initiated the sex. However, hotel surveillance footage shows Zamora holding R.W. up. At one point, she fell to her knees, according to police documents obtained by The New York Times. 

Those police documents detail how R.W. said she blacked out, only waking up a few times to find herself on the bed. She told police she didn’t feel like she had the capacity to give consent. The rape kit results have not been made public. 

A few days later, R.W. reported the crime to the police, who then recorded her follow-up call to Zamora.

Credit: customsborder / Instagram

According to The New York Times, the detective on the case recorded a phone call during which R.W. informed Zamora that the sex was non-consensual. The detective wrote, “he told her to not go there and that it wasn’t like that,” that sex “was never on his mind. They had too many shots,” The New York Times reports. Effectively, Zamora tried to call him out and he just deflected the blame onto both of them. 

When Zamora was eventually called in for an interview, a detective told Zamora that R.W. was in no state to offer consent, to which he “said that he knows, but he wasn’t in a state to consent either,” according to The New York Times

Women make up 5 percent of Border Patrol agents.

Credit: customsborder / Instagram

The female agents who do make up the force have voiced their outrage at the agency’s inaction around sexual assault accusations. “There’s not a single woman in the Border Patrol who has either not been sexually assaulted, outright raped or at the very least sexually harassed,” former Border Patrol agent Jenn Budd told The New York Times. Budd’s since become an immigrant rights activist, and urges women to reconsider joining the Border Patrol.

Two days before Zamora allegedly assaulted R.W., Tucson police arrested Border Patrol agent Steven Charles Holmes, 33, for sexually assaulting three women over seven years. 

The agency is already under immense criticism for its high rate of arrest charges brought against Border Patrol agents when compared to other law enforcement agencies.

Credit: @CBP / Twitter

In July 2019, Quartz reported that Border Patrol agents are arrested approximately five times as often as other law enforcement groups. With a budget of over $15 billion and over 60,000 employees, it’s the largest law enforcement agency in the United States. Many critics say the agency is not held to account for its unconstitutional means of coercing migrants to sign removal forms written in English, a language they often cannot understand. 

A Customs Border Patrol spokesperson told El Paso Times that its Office of Professional Responsibility “will review all the facts uncovered to ensure all allegations of misconduct … are thoroughly investigated for appropriate action by the agency.”

READ: US Border Patrol Sent This Man And His Child Back To Mexico And Hours Later They Were Thrown Into Trucks And Abducted

A White Couple Attacked A Black Hotel Worker At A Quality Inn

Things That Matter

A White Couple Attacked A Black Hotel Worker At A Quality Inn

NBC News

Crystal Caldwell, a 59-year-old front desk worker at a Quality Inn in Mystic Connecticut was on duty when a guest called her to complain that his hot water was not working. What should have been a quickly fixed mistake, soon became an all-out assault against Caldwell and is now being investigated as a hate crime.

Two suspects were arrested after being accused of attacking a Black hotel worker in Connecticut.

According to The Day newspaper Caldwell had offered the man over the phone to have his hot water fixed or find him a new room but before things could be resolved the man became irate and cursed at her. Things began to escalate when he claimed he would send his girlfriend to “kick her a**.” 

According to the New York Daily News, the man who has been identified as Philip Sarner headed to the front desk to confront Caldwell. She called her supervisors who tried to calm him down but Sarner soon attacked her and tried to jump over the desk. In the midst of his rage, he called her an “old monkey” while repeatedly punching her.

After police were called, Caldwell went to get ice from the hotel’s hallway and was soon confronted by Sarner’s girlfriend Emily Orbay. Orbay attacked her and was soon joined by Sarner.

The violent attack left Caldwell with bruises, damage to her right eye, and a concussion. She also suffers from injuries to her rib.

Caldwell was taken to a hospital for treatment of injuries.

Caldwell claims that during the attack the two called her racial slurs and criticized the Black Lives Matter movement.

Caldwell says that during the attack Orbay and Sarner yelled “Black Lives Matter? Your life doesn’t matter, you don’t deserve to live on this earth.” Both Orbay and Sarner were arrested on Monday in Brooklyn, New York by United States Marshals and NYPD. According to NBC Connecticut reports “Sarner is charged with second degree assault, third degree assault and intimidation based on bigotry and bias. Orbay is charged with two counts of third degree assault and intimidation based on bigotry and bias.”

Caldwell says the incident was very hard for her and an implication of a much bigger problem in our society.

“I am almost 60 years old, for him to want to physically fight me is very, very, very, very hard for me,” Caldwell said. “I should not have to be begging for my life, that was devastating because there are people that are dying, that are dead. This goes beyond police, these are just regular people, American citizens with hate. That man had so much hate for me in his heart.”

A Man And Woman Turned Themselves In After They Assaulted An 80-year-old Man At A Grocery Store

Things That Matter

A Man And Woman Turned Themselves In After They Assaulted An 80-year-old Man At A Grocery Store

KTLA / Twitter

Updated: July 15, 2020.

Roberto Flores Lopez, an 80-year-old man, who was grocery shopping with his wife in Lancaster, California was assaulted last Wednesday when he went to the restroom. Now police officials in the area are seeking information on his assailant while his family awaits his recovery.

Last week, Lancaster deputies received a 911 call around 8:30 a.m. in response to an assault that occurred with a deadly weapon at a grocery store.

The assault, according to the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Lancaster Station, took place in the 1000 block of East Avenue J and occurred in the bathroom of a grocery store. At the time, Lopez and his wife had headed to the store for a shopping trip when he went to the restroom. According to Lopez’s son, Francisco Ordorico, his father was found “inside the bathroom and he was bleeding on the floor.”

When police arrived on the scene, Lopez told them that he had been assaulted while inside the store’s restroom by someone who repeatedly punched and kicked him and then stole his wallet.

According to KTLA, Lopez “was transported to Antelope Valley Hospital and is currently being treated for facial injuries and several broken ribs.”

Ordorico told the outlet that his father had been “rushed to the hospital and placed in an intensive care unit.” KTLA also reports that even after Lopez gave the attacker his wallet, he continued to kick him and punch him in the head to the point that Lopez had to beg for his life.

Soon after a prominent local figure, asked the man involved in the battery to turn himself in, two people involved came forward.

According to Lancaster Sheriff’s Station. , the two suspects arrived at the Lancaster police station at 8 pm and are currently in custody. Investigators identified the suspects as Tamika White, 33, and Damaris Wade, 22. White is accused of accompanying Wade while he assaulted Flores-Lopez in the bathroom at the Lancaster grocery store.

According to Lt. Jon Hoyt, of the Lancaster Sheriff’s Station Wade’s family met with Flores-Lopez’s and said “Both families call for unity within our community.” Hoyt went on to say that “I think we have great ties with our community leaders,” Hoyt said. “This was a serious crime that was solved.”

Lopez’s family have also asked those capable of supporting to help cover his medical bills through his Gofundme page here.