Elizabeth Doney Havre Daily News email@example.com
There are some people in town that you do not appreciate until you need them. Law enforcement officials are on the top of that list, working 24 hours a day, seven days a week to keep Havre residents safe in their homes with dreams instead of nightmares. Nestled in the heart of Havre are the Border Patrol, Havre City Police, Hill County Sheriff's office, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Highway Patrol. It's because of these men and women, that our children can play freely, our highways are safe and our streets are filled with peace. This week is Law Enforcement Appreciation Week and a time for us to salute those men and women who place their lives on the line so you and I can live as we are so inclined. Today, we will take a moment to honor one of those agencies that has honored America and kept it's border safe... The U.S. Border Patrol, Havre Sector. Protecting the borders is no easy job. In fact, numerous American Border Patrol agents have lost their lives doing so. Havre is home to one of 20 sectors in America with stations in Havre, Plentywood and Shelby and includes Twin Falls, Idaho. There are also substations in Billings, Malta, St. Mary, Scobey and Sweetgrass. At one time, the border patrol worked for the Dept. of Labor as "tick riders" who dealt with smuggling on the southern borders as well as the Mexican cattle movement. Later, the Dept. of Immigration and Naturalization took over and the Havre Border Patrol office was established on Oct. 1, 1933. Just a few of the duties agents perform on a daily basis, include operational control of our nation's border, apprehension of terrorists and terrorist-weapons illegally entering the United States, deterance of illegal entries through improved enforcement, detection, apprehension and deterance of smugglers of humans, drugs and other contraband, using smart border technology to reduce crime in border communities and improving the American quality of life. "Our main mission is to secure the nation's border from the continential divide to the North Dakota Border," Supervisory Patrol Agent Craig Jeffrey, who has been with the border patrol since 1988 said. "To do that, we stay in contact with state, local and federal agencies. With our mission first, we then prioritize with other working agencies to control the border. "People don't know what is going on with our borders. 60 to 70 percent of our terrorists have immigrated to the United States through Canada just because of their relationships with other nations particularly with the British Common Wealth Countries," Jeffrey said. "Some of the countries that particularly worry us are Pakistan, Nigeria, Bangladesh and India. There are approximately 50 countries (nationals) that go to Canada and among some of those countries are active terrorist cells." The border patrol works between the ports of entry to stop all illegal entries, according to Jeffrey. "If we can do that, there won't be any terrorists coming in from Canada. A lot of people think that nothing happens around here, but things do happen here and that's what we are on the look out for," he said. "Generally we work with the county sheriff more than other law enforcement agencies because they see things going on outside the city limits - close to the border, but not really border issues. They'll call for our back up and we'll back them up. We interact with them quite a bit."
A quarterly intelligence meeting in Havre is held with local agencies participating. Together, the law enforcement agencies combat criminal organization and the people involved in the crimes, who are conducting their operations. "We have a pretty good intelligence program here with good personnel who are working 7/24 to try to predict what criminals are trying to do. And that's difficult when they are trying to predict what we are trying to do to stop them - it's like a game of chess," Jeffrey said. "Our borders are critical to us, especially in the south. There is so much pressure... any threat you can think of, it's there. There is also a threat from the north and generally it's not the Canadians but people from other countries who have access to Canada. The Canadian government is a great people and a great friend to the United States... but there is a criminal element that we do not want to let in that can access Canada and that's who we are worried about - the one that's going to do damage. And we are going to stop him or her with all possible means. Our agents are out there constantly monitoring our borders and we try to give them the tools to do it." For more information about the many things border patrol does to keep America safe, log onto www.cbp.gov.