“Socalj” and “Enojon” for Borderland Beat

A National Guard helicopter with three National Guard soldiers, working under federal Title 10 orders, and a Border Patrol agent on board crashed in La Grulla, Texas.

It is being reported that of the four crew, three died and the fourth is in critical condition. The Border Patrol Agent was one of those who died in the helicopter crash in the Rio Grande Valley, near the US-Mexico border.

Videos, posted to social media allegedly show the helicopter crash via cellphone and drone footage. Seemingly captured by nearby cartel members, possibly scouts, from across the border.

3 Dead & One Injured

Starr County Sheriff said its deputies were currently assisting with a downed helicopter incident on the East side of La Grulla, Texas, involving possibly four occupants.

A defense official with knowledge of the investigation told ABC News that two people were killed and a third person was injured in a helicopter crash near the US-Mexico border Friday evening,

A county official said that a helicopter carrying three National Guard members and a Border Patrol agent crashed along the U.S.-Mexico border in Texas on Friday, killing three of the people on board.
Starr County Judge Eloy Vera, the county’s top local official, said a fourth person on board was in critical condition. 

The crash happened near the small town of La Grulla, which is in Starr County. 
Those on board included one woman and three men, Vera said.
Channel 5 News reached out to the Texas Department of Public Safety for comment. DPS spokeswoman Sgt. Maria Hernandez referred all questions to U.S. Customs and Border Protection.

When reached for comment, CBP said they’ll release more information in a news release.

Cartel Member Filmed Crash

@BillMelugin, a FOX News correspondent, posted a video purportedly of the helicopter crash, captured by an alleged cartel member. 
“BREAKING: Per “Border Patrol source,” cartel members were watching the helicopter on their drone when it crashed, then they zoomed into the crash site and laughed about it. Posted on cartel social media. The La Grulla area sees frequent cartel activity via drug & human smuggling.”
Spanish is heard after the crash before the cameraman begins to run from the area, he and others are heard laughing, as well as the text ‘jajajaja’ in the social media post.
A rough translation of the video by Enojon.

“…The fly fell…run, run, run…can you see it? A fire started you can see the smoke…

Something failed on that thing that fucking fell…unintelligible if some men were killed there or not…”

The video then cuts to show another figure controlling a drone and filming the crash site of the helicopter.

National Guard Helicopter

The helicopter was a National Guard Lakota UH-72, according to the defense official. The Army National Guard’s website describes the purpose and specifications of the helicopter.
The model’s primary use is on search and rescue, MEDEVAC, and recon and surveillance operations. The crew was likely surveilling the border, specific cartel members, and/or migrant smugglers.

ARMY NATIONAL GUARD / UH-72A-LAKOTA

LAKOTA LIGHT UTILITY HELICOPTER (LUH)

MISSION


Provides a flexible response to Homeland Security requirements such as search and rescue operations, reconnaissance and surveillance, and medical evacuation (MEDEVAC) missions.

DESCRIPTION


The UH-72A LAKOTA Light Utility Helicopter (LUH) will conduct general support utility helicopter missions and execute tasks as part of an integrated effort with other Joint Services, government agencies, and non-governmental organizations. The LUH is to be deployed only to non-combat, non-hostile environments. The UH-72A is a variant of the American Eurocopter U.S.-produced EC-145.

The UH-72A is a twin-engine, single-main-rotor commercial helicopter. It has seating for two pilots and up to six passengers or two NATO standard litters. Two Turbomeca Arriel 1E2 engines, combined with an advanced four-blade rotor system, provide lift and speed in a wide range of operating conditions. The LUH can be configured with two NATO standard litters and passenger seating for a medical attendant and a crew chief.

The UH-72A is equipped with modern communication and navigation avionics. It includes a 3-axis autopilot and single pilot Instrument Flight Rules capability. The cockpit is compatible with night vision devices. In addition to the MEDEVAC configuration, the UH-72A is also being fielded in VIP, ARNG Security & Support (S&S), and Combined Training Center (CTC) configurations.

La Grulla, Texas Crash

Per BillMelugin’s sources, “there are “multiple fatalities” after a federalized National Guard helicopter w/ 3 National Guard soldiers working under federal Title 10 orders and a Border Patrol agent on board crashed in the RGV in La Grulla, TX this afternoon.”

 
“They were not working under the state of TX/Operation Lone Star. This was federal. I’ve reached out to CBP for comment.”
Two U.S. soldiers and a Border Patrol agent were killed and a fourth person was injured when a helicopter went down near Rio Grande City, Texas, on Friday, officials said.

The UH-72 Lakota helicopter crashed around 2:50 p.m. local time while it was “conducting aviation operations” in the area, according to a statement from the Defense Department’s Joint Task Force North.

The helicopter had been assigned to a support mission at the Southwest border of the U.S., the statement said.

The Joint Task Force North said it will not release the names of those who were killed until next of kin is notified. The person who was injured is a soldier.

The cause of the crash is under investigation.