Posted on: June 21, 2023, 07:13h.
Final up to date on: June 21, 2023, 10:20h.
What ought to have been simply one other routine run for Uber driver Daniel Piedra Garcia in El Paso, Texas, nearly turned deadly. A lady known as for an Uber to take her to an area on line casino earlier than pulling out a gun and taking pictures Garcia within the head with out provocation for a silly purpose.
Because the police investigation would subsequently decide, 48-year-old Phoebe Copas was planning to fulfill her boyfriend on the Talking Rock On line casino in El Paso. She was on the town and thought it could be an effective way for them to spend the afternoon collectively.
Copas requested the trip someday round 2 p.m. and started the brief journey to the property. Alongside the way in which, she noticed an indication in Piedra’s automobile that stated Juárez, Mexico. That seemingly innocuous signal set off kidnapping alarms in her head that she couldn’t quiet, and which led to tragedy.
Visions of Kidnapping Danced in Her Head
Mexico has come beneath hearth for numerous circumstances involving kidnapping and human trafficking just lately. The nation’s place as a number of the 2026 World Cup has highlighted the problems.
Maybe on account of all the media consideration, Copas thought that the signal was a sign that the 52-year-old Piedra was going to kidnap her and take her throughout the border. She then drew a gun from her purse and shot him within the head. Piedra subsequently misplaced management of the automobile and crashed.
Copas’ first response wasn’t to name for assist. As a substitute, she took a photograph of the injured man and despatched it to her boyfriend. Solely then did she name emergency providers.
The incident occurred close to the Bridge of Americas, which connects El Paso and Juárez. Police indicated that it was nowhere close to an space that provided instant entry to Mexico, based on court docket paperwork.
Copas possible wouldn’t have been acquainted with the realm, as she didn’t dwell in El Paso. Her place of residence is reportedly Tompkinsville, Ky.
Piedra stays within the hospital on life help, the place he’s in important situation with head and wrist accidents. His household has launched a GoFundMe web page to lift cash for the payments that can begin coming. On the time of publication, it had reached $10,886 of its $30K aim.
The police arrested Copas and charged her with aggravated assault, which could possibly be elevated to manslaughter if Piedra passes away. She was booked into the El Paso County Detention Heart on a $1 million bond.
Human Trafficking in Mexico
Juarez, which is simply throughout the border from El Paso, is within the Mexican state of Chihuahua. The state is listed on the US Division of State’s web site as a vacation spot that vacationers ought to “rethink” visiting due to the prevalence of crime and kidnapping.
Human trafficking stays one of many largest prison actions in Mexico. Similar to the illicit drug commerce, it’s managed nearly solely by the cartels.
This previous March, Mexican police discovered a container deserted on the aspect of a street within the state of Veracruz. In it had been 343 folks, together with 103 unaccompanied youngsters, locked up with no solution to escape.
It isn’t clear why the container had been deserted. All of these inside had been from numerous Latin American international locations.
Final week, the US Treasury introduced sanctions on a cartel in Mexicali. The Hernandez Salas gang is allegedly related to the Sinaloa cartel, and is claimed to be a significant participant behind human trafficking and migration within the area.
The pinnacle of the group, which reportedly helped some Russians enter the US covertly, is Ofelia Hernández Salas. She’s beneath arrest in Mexico and is awaiting extradition to the US.
Regularly, the cartels coerce US residents into serving to them with their unlawful immigration schemes. They’re compelled into changing into liaisons to facilitate the processing of documentation or they could have their IDs stolen for use by the gangs. Additionally they usually develop into ransom targets.
Crisis24, a safety kind comprised of former CIA officers and troopers, factors out that each one vacationers ought to keep away from the border cities. Its newest Kidnapping Safety Evaluation Ranking Map exhibits the entire border region presents an “excessive” chance that guests can be kidnapped.