Footage from a police officer’s body camera shows the rescue of 39 undocumented immigrants from the back of an 18-wheeler as it drove through Texas.
Deputy Aaron Ramirez and Sgt. Jerry Reyna of the Frio County Sheriff’s Department responded to a 911 call reporting multiple people exiting the trailer of a semi-truck outside of a convenience store. They opened the back of an 18-wheeler when they arrived to discover dozens of people drenched in sweat, laying on top of each other and gasping for air.
“They were sweating, dehydrated, it was horrible,” Ramirez told Fox 31 Denver. “They thought they were going to die.”
The officers helped the 39 immigrants out of the truck and passed out water bottles.
The 28 adult men, seven adult women, and four minors inside the truck had come from Mexico, El Salvador, and Guatemala.
One grateful boy gave the officers hugs to thank them for their help.
A pair of truck drivers first spotted people exiting the truck in a convenience store parking lot and decided to call 911. It was originally believed that there were only 10 people inside the truck.
“The driver was just standing there, not a care in the world,” Reyna said.
Truck driver Drew Christopher Potter, 33, was charged with one count of conspiracy to commit alien smuggling for financial gain and three counts of transportation of undocumented immigrants. He faces up to 10 years in prison and a fine of $250,000.