Plan underway to free U.S. Marine from Tijuana jail - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Plan underway to free U.S. Marine from Tijuana jail

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SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) - The fight continues to free a former Marine who has spent more than a month locked up in a Mexican jail. Andrew Tahmooressi missed an exit and accidentally drove across the border. He was arrested when Mexican police found guns in his vehicle.

Between caring for her two kids, talking to lawmakers:

"Tom Wallace from the State Department called me,” said Dana Vranicar.

And circulating an online petition, Dana Vranicar hasn't had a moment to herself over the past few days. But she wouldn't have it any other way, saying it's all in an effort to get her good friend, Marine Corps combat veteran Andrew Tahmooressi, out of a Tijuana prison where he's been since early April.

"Whatever it takes to get him home...that's it. That's all we're asking for,” she said.

The 25-year-old served with Dana's husband Sam. Both were injured while deployed and both suffer from PTSD.

Andrew, a machine gunner who served two tours of duty in Afghanistan, had moved from Florida to San Diego in January after friends and fellow combat vets convinced him to seek help.

But while driving with his truck, packed with all of his belongings including three legally purchased firearms, he turned the wrong way in San Ysidro and was arrested at the border on weapons charges.

Andrew's loved ones, including his mom, initially remained silent about the case but since speaking out to the media their campaign has exploded with support coming in from all over, including from Congressman Duncan Hunter who has called on Mexican authorities to expedite Andrew's release.

CBS News 8 spoke to Andrew's mom Tuesday who says she can't thank the public enough, adding: it's giving her son hope, something he hasn't had in a long time.

"He is now looking towards the future....that warms my heart that he has that hope now,” Jill Tahmooressi said.

Mexican authorities have set a hearing for the end of the month, but loved ones say that is too long to wait.

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