The violence from Columbus’ sister city just south of the border, Puerto Palomas, has so far been kept at bay and hasn’t crossed over the U.S. border. In 2009 the mayor of the town was kidnapped and executed, with reports linking the crime to drug cartels. Tourists have stopped visiting the town due to the increasing violence, but so far Columbus Border Patrol Agents have kept these types of crime out. Unfortunately, local cartel corruption is a different story.
In 2011 federal agents arrested three local Columbus officials, including the mayor and police chief, and eight others, on charges related to trafficking guns to a cartel across the border. Despite the town’s small size, its prominence as a border crossing has attracted the unwanted attention of Mexican drug cartels. A career as a Border Patrol Agent in Columbus will include profiling for suspected cartel members and potential gunrunners.
The most memorable incident at the Columbus city border crossing in New Mexico occurred when hundreds of Mexican revolutionaries led by Pancho Villa crossed on foot and horseback and attacked the town in the early part of the 20th century. Although since then there have not been any more raids of this sort, the traffic coming and going through the border has increased dramatically, driving the need for more qualified applicants to fill border patrol jobs in Columbus.
Border Patrol Agents and CBP Officers in Columbus
Border Patrol jobs in Columbus, New Mexico are located within the town, just next to the U.S.-Mexican border. The first thing a visitor will notice about the town (population 1,765 in the 2000 census) is its colorful wild-west theme. The most recent statistics available for the fiscal year 2008-2009 count a total of 37,004 pedestrian crossings, 51,978 private vehicle crossings, and 1,847 commercial vehicle crossings. Border Patrol jobs in Columbus are primarily available to CBP Officers who process and inspect vehicles and persons crossing the border, as well as the Border Patrol Agents that work the perimeter to track illegal border crossers away from the border station.
Import Specialists in Columbus
Import Specialists are also needed at the Columbus crossing due to its predominance in cattle importing. About a third of all imported Mexican cattle pass through New Mexico ports of entry, and about 300,000 head of cattle will pass through the Columbus crossing this year. The Columbus crossing is designed to process thousands of cattle per day.
Basic border patrol job requirements for CBP Officer, Border Patrol Agents and Imports Specialists are as follows:
- U.S. Citizenship
- Valid driver’s license
- No older than 40 (exception for previous law enforcement or military)
- No domestic violence convictions
- Pass a background, drug, and polygraph test
- Knowledge of Spanish