A year later, Trump’s ‘zero tolerance’ border policy frays
SAN DIEGO (AP) — As the Trump administration’s “zero tolerance” policy hits its anniversary, the promise to criminally prosecute everyone who crosses the Mexico border illegally has been forced to evolve.
A surge in family arrivals, largely from Guatemala and Honduras, has led Border Patrol agents to shift attention from preparing criminal cases. Instead they must care for children in detention facilities and drive families to border stations.
Ross Wilkin is a spokesman for the Border Patrol. He says a new administration policy to return asylum seekers to wait in Mexico is also taxing resources.
When the zero tolerance policy was announced last year, then-Attorney General Jeff Sessions vowed to prosecute first-time offenders for crimes punishable with up to six months in jail. Most sentences were only a few days.