Hernandez-Carranco v. U.S.A., et al.

Hernandez-Carranco v. U.S.A., et al., No. 3:12-CV-05186 (N.D. Tex., filed Dec. 19, 2012)

Josue Hernandez-Carranco, traveling with his father and a friend, stopped in the parking lot of a gas station to use the restroom when two Border Patrol (BP) agents approached and stood in front of the doors of his truck. The agent on Mr. Hernandez-Carranco’s side opened his door, grabbed him by his arm, and, in Spanish, demanded his papers. Mr. Hernandez-Carranco replied in English that he had papers, and showed the agent his valid Texas driver’s license. In Spanish, the agent told him that this was insufficient. He then handcuffed Mr. Hernandez-Carranco, pulled him out of the truck, and placed him in a BP van with several other men. Mr. Hernandez-Carranco was cold, but the agent refused his request to grab his jacket before he was put in the van.

Once on the road, an agent drove the van so recklessly that the men feared for their safety. When the agents finally agreed to a rest stop, they handcuffed the men in pairs and took them out of the van on the side of the road. The BP agents taunted and humiliated one man for his discomfort at having to relieve himself in this situation.

Mr. Hernandez-Carranco seeks damages for his unlawful seizure. At the time of arrest, the agents lacked any reasonable suspicion that Mr. Hernandez-Carranco, his father, or his friend had committed an unlawful act or were in the country illegally. They were over 200 miles from the border, had broken no traffic laws, and had taken no evasive or otherwise unusual action. The BP agents interrogated and arrested Mr. Hernandez-Carranco based solely on his Hispanic appearance.

On January 28, 2014, the parties met for a settlement conference, where they expressed interest in engaging in non-binding mediation with a private mediator or a settlement conference to be conducted by the Magistrate Judge. On April 1, 2014, both parties filed a stipulation of dismissal of all claims.

Counsel: De Mott, McChesney, Curtright & Armendáriz, LLP

Contact: David Armendáriz | 210.534.1844 | davida@dmcausa.com