HAUGHTON, LA (KSLA) - Nine people now are in custody following a traffic stop Tuesday during which numerous people reportedly ran from a Border Patrol agent.
Numerous people fled when the agent stopped a 2001 Toyota along Interstate 20 near the Haughton/Fillmore exit, Border Patrol spokesman Rob Brisley said.
The agent arrested two individuals as several others fled.
Authorities said by 9 p.m. Tuesday, five people were in custody - three males and two females. A sixth person was apprehended sometime overnight, and a seventh was taken into custody Wednesday morning. Two more people were arrested Wednesday afternoon.
Those taken into custody have been turned over to the Border Patrol office with the U.S. Customs and Border Protection.
"All individuals arrested were taken into custody for being in the United States illegally," Brisley said. "No injuries were reported. And this incident remains under investigation."
Authorities provided no details about how nor where the latest of the people being sought were taken into custody.
"Our BP agents and law enforcement remain vigilant in the Shreveport area," Brisley said.
In a statement, Bossier Parish deputies described the people who fled from the SUV as Hispanic.
"We understand the concern that our residents have regarding the situation, but we have no reason to believe these individuals are dangerous, and the ones we've brought into custody have been without incident," said Bossier Sheriff Julian Whittington. "The others may have already fled the area, but our deputies will continue to patrol and check on residents in the area to keep folks safe."
Bossier Parish deputies said they don't believe the fugitives are dangerous, and it is unclear how many, if any, are still being sought.
Authorities urge anyone who sees anything suspicious to call the Bossier Sheriff's Office at (318) 965-2203.
Alternatively, the Border Patrol's New Orleans sector asks that "if you see something, say something" by reporting suspicious activity. The sector's toll-free telephone number is (866) 50-PROTECT or (866) 507-7683. Suspicious activity also can be reported by calling (800) BE ALERT or (800) 232-5378.
The Border Patrol reported 337,117 apprehensions nationwide in fiscal year 2015, down from 486,651 the previous fiscal year. Among those were 849 apprehensions in the Border Patrol's News Orleans sector. Of those, statistics show, 455 involved apprehensions of people other than Mexican nationality.
The Border Patrol's New Orleans sector has jurisdiction over Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Kentucky, Tennessee and part of the Florida Panhandle. It has border stations in Baton Rouge, Lake Charles and New Orleans as well as the Mississippi cities of Gulfport and Mobile, according to its website.
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's field office in New Orleans is not involved in the Bossier case. But its statistics for fiscal year 2015 – (Oct. 1, 2014 – Sept. 30, 2015) – also help provide context about how often such incidents arise.
ICE's New Orleans field office removed 6,281 individuals from the United States during fiscal year 2015. Of those, 4,153 people – 66 percent – were convicted criminals. That's higher than the national percentage of 59 percent. Nationwide, there were 235,413 removals, of which 139,368 were convicted criminals, during the same time period.
As of Sept. 12, ICE's New Orleans field office has removed 4,361 individuals thus far this fiscal year. Of those, 2,892 were convicted criminals.
More details about ICE's activities – including the number of firearms and amount and types of illegal drugs seized during some of the apprehensions – is available by clicking here.