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El Paso detainee fatally shot by federal agents after seizing weapon, probe alleges

Manuel Gonzalez-Moran, a 33-year-old Mexican national, was shot after he grabbed “an edged weapon” and advanced on border agents, the FBI probe alleges.

A federal investigation into Tuesday's deadly shooting of a detainee at a U.S. Border Patrol station in El Paso, Texas, found that officers killed the man after he had seized "an edged weapon" in the processing area and advanced toward them.

The FBI said Thursday that Manuel Gonzalez-Moran, a 33-year-old Mexican national with a criminal history, was holding a metal pipe when he was initially approached by agents. He eventually stood down and was detained for illegally crossing the border with Mexico and transported to the border patrol station.

The FBI gave the following account of what happened next: After arriving at the station, Moran charged out of the holding cell, ran past an agent and picked up "an edged weapon off a desk in the processing area."

Investigators said that agents ordered him to stop, but he continued to advance toward them. They then tried to stop him with a taser, which did not work, before shooting him.

Vehicles drive in and out of the Ysleta Border Patrol Station in far East El Paso on Oct. 4, 2022.
The Ysleta Border Patrol Station in far East El Paso on Tuesday.Gaby Velasquez / El Paso Times via USA Today Network

The FBI's update said that Moran was given immediate medical attention, and later died at the hospital of his wounds.

Moran was arrested in 2011 by the Pueblo County sheriff’s office in Colorado and was later convicted of assault with a deadly weapon resulting in serious bodily injury, the FBI said. Moran was paroled in May after serving 11 years of a 17-year sentence and was deported to Mexico, the FBI said.

The Pueblo County sheriff's office could not immediately confirm Moran's arrest.

The Mexican Consulate in El Paso declined to comment on Thursday but confirmed in a statement shortly after the incident that the man involved was a Mexican national. They said he was shot while being processed at the station upon finding criminal charges against him. The consulate added it was in communication with U.S. federal authorities investigating the incident.

The FBI and the U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s Office of Professional Responsibility are working together on the investigation. 

The shooting comes after two brothers, one a former jail warden at a detention center for undocumented immigrants, were arrested for shooting at two migrants who had stopped for water at a reservoir in West Texas, according to court documents.

Mark Sheppard and Michael Sheppard, both 60, were arrested for the Sept. 27 shooting and charged with manslaughter after one of the migrants died.