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Hummer found burned; officials not sure if used in BP killing
Baja California police have recovered the burned remains of a Hummer and a Ford pickup suspected of being used in a smuggling attempt that led to the death of a Yuma Border Patrol agent last weekend.
Residents on the west side of Mexicali, Baja Calif., found a Hummer in flames in their neighborhood about 3:30 p.m. Saturday, police said, and a partially burned Ford pickup was located Sunday in Ejido Nayarit, a farming area south of Los Algodones.
Yuma Sector Border Patrol Senior Agent Luis Aguilar was struck by a Hummer and killed Saturday morning. He had been laying down spike strips in an effort to stop the vehicle in the Buttercup Recreation Area, a popular campground for Imperial Sand Dunes enthusiasts on the south side of the interstate.
The FBI is handling the investigation on the American side of the border, but no new developments have been reported.
Agent Eric Anderson, spokesman for the Yuma Sector Border Patrol, said plans are under way for Aguilar's funeral services.
"We are still waiting on the memorial service dates," Anderson said.
He added that the public can contact the Border Patrol at 341-2800 to offer condolences to agents and family members.
Law enforcement officers suspected the Hummer and the pickup of smuggling drugs or illegal immigrants, and were pursuing them on Interstate 8 when the Hummer turned into the dunes and fled toward Mexico.
The Hummer was destroyed in the fire, but identification numbers found in the vehicle indicated it had previously been reported stolen in Santa Ana, Calif., said Juan Francisco Chapa, an international liaison for Baja police.
"It can't be confirmed that they are the vehicles, but from the descriptions (of the Hummer and pickup) and the time they were found, they could be the vehicles that took part" in the smuggling attempt, Chapa said.
The Ford previously had been reported stolen in Calexico, Calif., Chapa said.
Chapa said Baja California officials have set up roadblocks around Mexicali and highways leading out of the state in an effort to catch the drivers of the vehicles.
Cesar Neyoy is a staff writer for Bajo El Sol, The Sun's Spanish-language sister newspaper. Sun staff writer Sarah Reynolds contributed to this report.