NewsLocal News


Local immigration advocate speaks on woman dying after fall from border wall

u.s.-mexico border wall near otay mesa port of entry
Posted at 10:29 AM, Sep 16, 2023
and last updated 2023-09-16 13:29:44-04

OTAY MESA, Calif. (KGTV) – Sky10 looked down at a sad sight on the border.

On Friday afternoon, the San Diego Police Department told ABC 10News a woman had fallen from a portion of the border wall on Drucker Lane in Otay Mesa.

That woman died at the scene.

“It’s absolutely tragic. There really aren’t many opportunities for people to present themselves at the port to make an asylum claim,” Pedro Rios, the Director of American Friends Service Committee, said. “So, people are forced to have to cross into the U.S. through extremely dangerous methods. One of which is attempting to scale the border wall.”

Rios said these 30-foot-falls tend to lead to serious injuries and sometimes death like we saw on Friday afternoon. He told ABC 10News he and others hear this is happening more frequently.

“Not only here in San Diego but across the entire Borderlands, we hear of people falling all the time,” Rios said. “We have seen more cases, more and more, even people that have been here. Earlier today for instance, I was attending to a man who had a hand wound because he climbed part of the border wall.”

A UC San Diego study from April 2022 stated there’s been a five-time increase in the number of high severity injuries happening along the border wall in San Diego.

It says UCSD trauma physicians connect that to the border wall being raised to 30 feet.

As migrants make their way to the U.S. to seek asylum, Rios said scaling the wall isn’t something they advocate for.

“We don’t want to see anyone scaling the border wall and risk injury or death. We would hope though that the Biden Administration would respect asylum laws and allow people to show up at the border, at the port and present themselves for asylum,” Rios said.