TEXAS — Governor Greg Abbott on Tuesday sent a letter to Major General Tracy R. Norris, Adjutant General of the Texas National Guard, ordering guardsmen to assist the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) with arresting individuals for state charges related to the border crisis, according to a press statement issued by the Governor’s Office.
During the Governor’s Border Security Summit in mid-June, Abbott announced that individuals who commit various crimes will be subject to arrest and confinement. The order is part of the governor’s disaster declaration that directs state police personnel to enforce all federal and state criminal laws including for criminal trespassing, smuggling, and human trafficking.
“To respond to this disaster and secure the rule of law at our Southern border, more manpower is needed—in addition to the troopers from DPS and soldiers from the Texas National Guard I have already deployed there—and DPS needs help in arresting those who are violating state law,” reads the letter. “By virtue of the power and authority vested in me by the Constitution and laws of the State of Texas, I hereby order that the Texas National Guard assist DPS in enforcing Texas law by arresting lawbreakers at the border.”
The governor has made border security a high priority after the Biden administration essentially abdicated federal responsibility. Several months ago, Abbott declared a state of emergency. Part of his plan includes $1.1 billion to erect a border wall, Law Officer reported. The Lone Star State recently moved forward with a $250 million down payment toward the project.