Death toll in immigrant smuggling case cut to 9 - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Death toll in immigrant smuggling case cut to 9

Posted: Updated:
Photo: NBC Photo: NBC
SAN ANTONIO -

The Latest on several people found dead in the back of a tractor-trailer in a Walmart parking lot in Texas (all times local):

3:30 p.m.

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement has lowered the death toll of people found in the back of a sweltering tractor-trailer outside of a San Antonio Walmart from 10 to nine.

Thomas Homan, the agency's acting director, had told The Associated Press that two people died in a hospital. But agency spokeswoman Liz Johnson says only one person died at a hospital.

Eight dead bodies were found in the truck, bringing the total number of dead to nine.

___

2:45 p.m.

A U.S. official says the death toll from people found in the back of a sweltering tractor-trailer in the parking lot of a San Antonio Walmart has risen to 10.

Thomas Homan, acting director of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, told The Associated Press that two people died in a hospital. Eight dead bodies were found in the truck.

Based on initial interviews with survivors, Homan says there may have been more than 100 people in the truck. Thirty-eight were found inside. The rest are believed to have fled or been picked up.

Homan says some survivors have identified themselves as Mexican nationals. Four of the passengers are believed to be between 10 and 17 years old, and at least one of them is in serious condition.

___

1:10 p.m.

Authorities say 30 people have been taken to the hospital after they were found in the back of a sweltering tractor-trailer with in the parking lot of a San Antonio Walmart. Eight others died in what police are calling "a human trafficking crime."

Twenty are said to be in extremely critical or serious condition, many suffering from extreme dehydration and heat stroke. Others had lesser injuries.

San Antonio Fire Chief Charles Hood says the trailer didn't have a working air conditioning system and the victims "were very hot to the touch."

Police Chief William McManus says some of those in the truck ran into the woods, leading to a search. He says many of the truck's occupants appeared to be in their 20s and 30s but that there were also what appeared to be two school-age children.

Officials said the truck driver was arrested. The U.S. Homeland Security Department is taking the lead in the investigation.

___

9:45 a.m.

San Antonio-based U.S. Attorney Richard Durbin Jr. says those responsible for the deaths of eight people inside a sweltering tractor-trailer truck outside a San Antonio Walmart store are "ruthless human smugglers indifferent to the well-being of their fragile cargo."

Durbin says those inside the truck were helpless in the punishing 100-degree-plus (37.78-Celsius) heat and were victims of a "smuggling venture gone horribly wrong."

He says federal investigators will work with San Antonio police to identify those responsible.

After daybreak Sunday, the truck remained at the side and toward the back of the store. The scene is marked off with yellow crime-scene tape and with officers and patrol cars. The trailer of the 18-wheeler truck has an Iowa license plate. Neither it nor the truck's cab appear to have markings.

___

7 a.m.

San Antonio Fire Chief Charles Hood says the many injured survivors taken from the tractor-trailer parked outside a Walmart store were suffering in varying degrees from such injuries as heat stroke and dehydration.

Hood told journalists at the scene that paramedics and firefighters who treated the victims found all had accelerated heartbeats when they were taken from the truck in the stifling heat. The high in San Antonio had reached 101 degrees (38 Celsius) on Saturday.

"They were very hot to the touch. So these people were in this trailer without any signs of any type of water," Hood says.

In video authorities posted online, Hood stood against a backdrop of flashing emergency vehicle lights in the pre-dawn hours as he briefed reporters. He says police and fire officials treated it as a "mass casualty situation" much like an airplane disaster.

In addition to the eight dead, Hood says, there were at least 30 others aboard the truck. Of those survivors, at least 20 people were in extremely critical or serious condition and the others had lesser injuries.

"We are very fortunate that there weren't 38 people who were locked inside of this vehicle dead," he says.

___

5:40 a.m.

The temperature in San Antonio had been in the 90s just before eight people were found dead in a tractor-trailer outside a Walmart store.

Authorities say several other people were found alive in the truck, which didn't have a working air conditioning system despite the blistering summer heat. Those people have been hospitalized.

Police say it's a horrific human trafficking case and the driver has been arrested.

Police say a Walmart employee was approached in the parking lot by a person from the truck who was asking for water late Saturday night or early Sunday morning. Police say the employee gave the person the water and called for help. They say responding officers found the people in the tractor-trailer.

The National Weather Service says the temperature in San Antonio hit 101 degrees just before 5 p.m. Saturday and didn't dip below 90 degrees until after 10 p.m.

___

5:10 a.m.

The driver of a tractor-trailer in which eight people were found dead in a parking lot outside a Texas Walmart has been arrested.

Authorities haven't released the identity of the driver.

San Antonio police say several other people from the tractor-trailer have been taken to hospitals. They say it's a horrific human trafficking case.

Police say a Walmart employee was approached in the parking lot by a person from the truck who was asking for water late Saturday night or early Sunday morning. Police say the employee gave the person the water and then called them and when they arrived they found the eight people dead in the back of the trailer.

Police say the U.S. Department of Homeland Security is involved in the investigation into what happened

___

4:45 a.m.

Eight people have been found dead in a tractor-trailer outside a Walmart in Texas in what police are calling a horrific human trafficking case.

Several other people have been taken to hospitals.

San Antonio police say a Walmart employee was approached in a parking lot by a person from the truck who was asking for water late Saturday night or early Sunday morning. Police say the employee gave the person the water and then called them and when they arrived they found the eight people dead in the back of the trailer.

Police say they checked surveillance video, which shows vehicles had arrived and picked up other people from the tractor-trailer. They say they're "looking at a human trafficking crime."

Police say the U.S. Department of Homeland Security is involved in the investigation into what happened.

(Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • See a movie in a theater every day for a year for only $90? Costco offering bundle with MoviePass and Fandor

    See a movie in a theater every day for a year for only $90? Costco offering bundle with MoviePass and Fandor

    Wednesday, December 13 2017 5:35 PM EST2017-12-13 22:35:41 GMT

    KHQ.COM - If you're into watching movies in theaters AND at home, Costco has a deal for you! The wholesaler is offering an evoucher that bundles a full year of access to MoviePass and Fandor for only $89.99.  MoviePass, which gives free movie tickets, usually costs $120 a year alone. Twelve months of Fandor, a movie streaming service, is $60. 

    >>

    KHQ.COM - If you're into watching movies in theaters AND at home, Costco has a deal for you! The wholesaler is offering an evoucher that bundles a full year of access to MoviePass and Fandor for only $89.99.  MoviePass, which gives free movie tickets, usually costs $120 a year alone. Twelve months of Fandor, a movie streaming service, is $60. 

    >>
  • Law enforcement arrests 20 people in multi-state meth ring

    Law enforcement arrests 20 people in multi-state meth ring

    Wednesday, December 13 2017 8:46 PM EST2017-12-14 01:46:29 GMT

    SPOKANE, Wash. - According to the U.S. Attorney for Eastern Washington, federal, state and local law enforcement conducted a large scale take-down targeting a criminal conspiracy distributing methamphetamine in Washington, Idaho and Montana on Wednesday. Hundreds of law enforcement officials including federal agents and state and local officers executed federal search warrants in Spokane, Moses Lake, Mattawa and in North Idaho.

    >>

    SPOKANE, Wash. - According to the U.S. Attorney for Eastern Washington, federal, state and local law enforcement conducted a large scale take-down targeting a criminal conspiracy distributing methamphetamine in Washington, Idaho and Montana on Wednesday. Hundreds of law enforcement officials including federal agents and state and local officers executed federal search warrants in Spokane, Moses Lake, Mattawa and in North Idaho.

    >>
  • Missoula Police searching for 'person of interest' after childrens' bones found in shed

    Missoula Police searching for 'person of interest' after childrens' bones found in shed

    Wednesday, December 13 2017 6:25 PM EST2017-12-13 23:25:24 GMT

    MISSOULA, Mont. - Law enforcement officers in western Montana have a "person of interest" they want to interview after a box containing the bones and teeth of three children were found in the shed of a Missoula home in September.

    >>

    MISSOULA, Mont. - Law enforcement officers in western Montana have a "person of interest" they want to interview after a box containing the bones and teeth of three children were found in the shed of a Missoula home in September.

    >>
HD DOPPLER 6i
/
  • Top Stories from KHQHomeMore>>

  • 5-year-old church shooting survivor wants 1 thing for Christmas (and you can help)

    Thursday, December 14 2017 9:07 AM EST2017-12-14 14:07:14 GMT

    NBCNEWS.COM - Ryland Ward, the 5-year-old boy who was repeatedly shot at church during last month’s horrific massacre in Sutherland Springs, Texas, has only one thing on his Christmas wish list as he recovers in the hospital: holiday cards. Ryland’s grandmother, Sandy Ward, explained to TODAY that there’s not a lot Ryland can do during the day at University Hospital in San Antonio, about an hour’s drive from his home.

    >>

    NBCNEWS.COM - Ryland Ward, the 5-year-old boy who was repeatedly shot at church during last month’s horrific massacre in Sutherland Springs, Texas, has only one thing on his Christmas wish list as he recovers in the hospital: holiday cards. Ryland’s grandmother, Sandy Ward, explained to TODAY that there’s not a lot Ryland can do during the day at University Hospital in San Antonio, about an hour’s drive from his home.

    >>
  • Salma Hayek says Harvey Weinstein forced her into sex scene in 'Frida'

    Salma Hayek says Harvey Weinstein forced her into sex scene in 'Frida'

    Thursday, December 14 2017 7:32 AM EST2017-12-14 12:32:56 GMT

    NEW YORK (AP) - In an op-ed, Salma Hayek says that her refusals of Harvey Weinstein's advances led to a nightmare experience making the 2002 Frida Kahlo biopic "Frida."   The New York Times on Wednesday published Hayek's account in which she writes that Weinstein was for years "my monster." The actress said that Weinstein would turn up at her door "at all hours of the night, hotel after hotel, location after location."

    >>

    NEW YORK (AP) - In an op-ed, Salma Hayek says that her refusals of Harvey Weinstein's advances led to a nightmare experience making the 2002 Frida Kahlo biopic "Frida."   The New York Times on Wednesday published Hayek's account in which she writes that Weinstein was for years "my monster." The actress said that Weinstein would turn up at her door "at all hours of the night, hotel after hotel, location after location."

    >>
  • Disney buying big chunk of 21st Century Fox in $52.4B deal

    Thursday, December 14 2017 7:21 AM EST2017-12-14 12:21:19 GMT

    BURBANK, Calif. (AP) - Disney buying big chunk of 21st Century Fox in $52.4B deal, bringing together film studios and growing overseas. Under the terms of the all-stock deal, Fox assets that will be sold to Disney, including the Twentieth Century Fox movie and TV studio. The Wall Street Journal first reported the exact terms of the deal.

    >>

    BURBANK, Calif. (AP) - Disney buying big chunk of 21st Century Fox in $52.4B deal, bringing together film studios and growing overseas. Under the terms of the all-stock deal, Fox assets that will be sold to Disney, including the Twentieth Century Fox movie and TV studio. The Wall Street Journal first reported the exact terms of the deal.

    >>