This is the Texas border cartel corridor where speeding and smuggling is skyrocketing because the border highway is open and not patrolled like it should be. We have threats from jihadists to attack America and we have wide open borders…Lord help us!
The Williamson County Sheriff’s office interdiction team is hard at work busting drug runners along Central Texas’ stretch of I-35.
“We’ve had a banner year in the last 12 months, actually probably in the past two years,” said Captain Mike Gleason. “Our loads have consisted of 20 plus gallons of meth oil, hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of pounds of marijuana,” he says of the drugs they’ve seized, that also includes “12-20 pounds of methamphetamine, it’s a lot.”
I-35 has also been called the “Cartel Corridor.” It runs from near the Southern tip of Texas to Canada’s border. In Texas, it’s one of many State Highways The Department of Public Safety is responsible for patrolling, highways that some say have become dangerous.
“I am not insinuating, I know that it’s a fact in Central Texas that people are dying because our Troopers are no longer here locally,” said Bill Gravell. He is Williamson County’s Precinct 4 Justice of The Peace. He is one of 4 J.P.’s in the county who certify deaths, including those at vehicle crash scenes.
As our FOX 7 investigation revealed, according to three different internal DPS highway reports, there’s been a dramatic rise in crash fatalities on State Highways over the past two years. In Central Texas, they’re up 71%. But, records show speeding tickets in the area are down, by 50%. The internal crash reports also show the border region is one of the only areas in Texas where crashes are down, 33.8% in 2 years.
“When the troopers are not on the road, people don’t obey the laws, when they’re not obeying the laws, people die,” Gravell says.
And he adds, “They have made a decision at the Capitol to shift all of our assets to South Texas, and here in Central Texas in the past year, it’s cost us an additional 85 lives on the highway.”
But, state highways aren’t the only Texas roads the DPS has been tasked to protect. During our 3-month long FOX 7 uncovered a contract between TXDot and the DPS. It required troopers to patrol the 49 miles of SH130 that runs through Central Texas. In late July. FOX 7 got a copy of the contract from TXDot through an open records request. It began in 2006, and it paid the DPS $6.7 million dollars over 5 years to employ 13 full-time troopers, 11 hired to cover the 49 mile Central Texas stretch of SH130.
“It wasn’t unusual at all to have 8-10 troopers here in our community everyday patrolling our streets and today a great day is if we can have 2 or 3,” says Gravell.
The contract expired in 2011. FOX 7 asked TXDot why it wasn’t renewed. Agency spokesperson Nick Wade told FOX on the record that TXDot was looking to cut costs and had proposed a lower amount but the DPS didn’t accept the new offer.
Via: FOX 7 Austin