Customs and Border Protection statement details fatal shooting of Tohono O'odham man

Published: Tuesday, May 23, 2023 - 6:04pm
Updated: Wednesday, May 24, 2023 - 7:21am

Customs and Border Protection has released a statement about the shooting death of a Tohono O’odham tribal member Raymond Mattia in Menagers Dam, a tribal community a few miles from the border crossing in Lukeville, Arizona, last week. 

In a statement released late Monday, CBP says Border Patrol agents were responding to an assistance request from the Tohono O’odham Police Department, which had received a shots-fired call within the Tohono O'odham Nation.

The agency says agents joined a tribal officer at a meeting point and followed him to a residence near Menagers Dam, where they spread out and encountered an individual.

The statement doesn't say Mattia's name but says the tribal officer and Border Patrol agents approached an individual standing in front of a structure who "threw an object," which landed a few feet from the officer’s feet. It says three agents fired their weapons and struck the man "several times" after he "abruptly extended his right arm away from his body." He was pronounced dead on scene. 

Family members who spoke to Tucson TV station KVOA following the shooting Thursday said Mattia had called the Border Patrol himself for assistance with undocumented immigrants at his property and was shot an estimated 38 times.

CBP declined to respond to questions about that discrepancy or requests for more details, citing ongoing investigations. 

The case is being investigated by the FBI, the Tohono O'odham Nation Police Department, and CBP’s Office of Professional Responsibility. CBP says that office has reviewed video footage of the incident, but the agency has not made it public.

This is the second fatal shooting in the Border Patrol's Tucson Sector so far this year.