SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — Activity is picking up along the San Diego border. Border Patrol reports that in March there was a nearly 30 percent increase in crossing compared to that time last year.
"You can see people in between there. They'll come in where there's grates where we have to open them up under treaty with Mexico, said Christopher Harris, a retired Border Patrol agent and union leader as he looked at a group of migrants waiting for agents to apprehend them. "So generally, they'll sit in-between and they're going to give themselves up to us."
It's something that continues to spike in the San Diego sector.
Under Title 42, migrants can be expelled right after they are processed because of the pandemic, but that is set to expire next month.
"I think what's out of control now is just going to be more out of control. I mean it's a race to the bottom," he said.
He says Title 8 or regular immigration law is already overwhelmed.
Border Patrol said from October 1to March 3 it processed 86,074 and added more than half were from countries other than Mexico.
Border Kindness, a border advocacy group that places water in the desert for migrants crossing into the US, said its also seeing an increase in traffic along the border but doesn't think the ending of Title 42 will increase volume.
They think it'll keep migrants safe.
They say the traffic shows a trend of desperation to get out of their countries of origin for multiple reasons ranging from violence to financial reasons.
Border Patrol opened what it calls a 'soft-sided facility' at the end of January to increase processing capabilities.
"Every station has to send agents out to process at that new processing center. So that sets a levy on each station," explained Harris.
Harris said it's putting a strain on agents.
"Our agents are doing the best they can. A lot of these people, men, and women are former military. They care about this country. They care about the constitution. They want to be as humane as possible. They want to catch bad guys," he said.