Border Patrol officials announced this week that Chief Patrol Agent Brian Hastings will serve as the chief patrol agent of the nation’s busiest sector. Hastings is completing a tour as chief of the Law Enforcement Operations Directorate at Border Patrol headquarters in Washington, D.C.
Newly appointed Border Patrol Chief Rodney Scott appointed Chief Brian Hastings to leat the Rio Grande Valley Sector in Sout Texas. The sector is the busiest sector along the U.S. southwest border in terms of drug seizures and the apprehension of migrants illegally crossing the border. Hastings takes command of the sector on March 15, according to information obtained from Border Patrol officials.
“Supporting the men and women of the RGV Sector, all of whom accomplished amazing things to secure this nation during a time of an unprecedented crisis, is my priority,” Chief Hastings said in a written statement. “RGV agents have been at the epicenter of the crisis throughout and they performed those duties in an outstanding manner.”
Hastings will have command of nine Border Patrol stations and will be responsible for securing 277 river miles along the Texas-Mexico border. In addition, he maintains responsibility for 317 miles of Texas coastline with the Gulf of Mexico. The sector covers 34 South Texas counties.
During Fiscal Year 2019, which ended on September 30, 2019, agents in the Rio Grande Valley Sector apprehended 339,135 migrants — nearly 40 percent of all migrants apprehended in the nine southwestern Border Patrol sectors, according to the Southwest Border Migration report. Those included 211,631 Family Unit Aliens, 34,523 Unaccompanied Alien Children, and 92,981 single alien adults.
During the first two months of the current fiscal year, Rio Grande Valley Sector agents apprehended an additional 9,379 illegal aliens who crossed the border between ports of entry. This includes 2,854 Family Units, 1,106 migrant children, and 5,779 single alien adults.
Also during Fiscal Year 2019, Rio Grande Valley Sector agents seized 122,769 pounds of marijuana and 2,594 pounds of cocaine — both totals were the highest in the nation. Agents in this sector referred 26,801 cases to the Department of Justice — the second-highest total in the nation.
“Chief Hastings began his Border Patrol career in 1995 at the Cotulla station in the Laredo Sector,” Border Patrol officials said in a written statement. “Throughout his career, he held key leadership roles on both the southwest and northern borders to include CPA of the Buffalo Sector as well as multiple assignments at U.S. Border Patrol Headquarters.”
Chief Hastings added, “I am committed to doing everything I can to strengthen the already incredible partnerships that my predecessors, current leaders, and agents have formed in the Rio Grande Valley.”