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New witness accounts contradict Border Patrol's story

Officials say a Border Patrol agent was on a stakeout when shots were fired. It happened at 615 Moss Street near Broadway in Chula Vista.

SAN DIEGO (CNS) - An autopsy was pending Saturday on a mother of five shot to death by a Border Patrol agent in Chula Vista.

Valeria "Monique" Alvarado, 32, who grew up in the area and lived in Southcrest, allegedly ran into a Border Patrol agent with her car and was fatally shot through the windshield about 1 p.m. Friday on Moss Street near Oaklawn Avenue, according to federal agents, Chula Vista police and broadcast reports.

Border Patrol Deputy Chief Rodney Scott said the agent was in the area to serve a warrant. He apparently was not in uniform.

The agent was carried several hundred yards on the hood of the Honda Alvarado was driving, then he opened fire, "fearing for his life," Scott said.

Alvarado family members told the U-T San Diego the woman had five children, 3-17 years old.

"Where's the evidence my wife threatened a trained officer?" asked her husband, Gilbert Alvarado.

"I want justice," he told the newspaper."They said they didn't know what had brought her to that neighborhood." Chula Vista police told the U-T the Honda was going west closer to Broadway when the agent was struck.

Hector Salazar, who lives nearby, told the U-T he was standing at his mailbox when he heard a man yell, "Stop!" He said he saw a man on the hood of a two-door car, aiming a gun at the windshield. He said heard five shots.

Eduardo Comacho, 22, said he was walking on Woodlawn Avenue with a friend. He told the U-T they heard about seven shots. He said he saw a man in a red shirt, without a badge, holding his gun. He appeared shaken. Other undercover officers joined him, pulling out their badges as they walked.

"The lady was hanging out the door, barely moving," Comacho said. The agents checked her pulse, and medics who arrived shortly after began CPR on her on the ground. Comacho could see what appeared to be bullet wounds in her chest, shoulder, arm and leg.

"He did not miss," Comacho told the newspaper.

Ayanna Evans, 19, who lives in a nearby apartment building, said she never saw the agent on the car. She said she happened to look out the window and saw the Honda backing up slowly, and a man in a red shirt walking toward the car.

"Then I heard, `Pop, pop, pop,'" she told the U-T.

Another resident of the same building, Prince Watson, told the newspaper he also saw the Honda going backward, with no one on it.

"She wasn't speeding or driving erratic at all. I heard the agent say, 'Stop.' He was in the street and started shooting and walking toward the car," Watson told the U-T.

Border Patrol agents would not say who they were looking to arrest when the shooting happened.

Christian Ramirez of the Southern Border Community Coalition to the U-T the shooting was "troubling," in part because Alvarado was not wanted by law enforcement authorities and was a U.S. citizen.

The U.S. Inspector General's Office will review the investigation being done by Border Patrol agents and Chula Vista police.


THIS IS AN UPDATED STORY. For the original story, read below. 

CHULA VISTA (CNS/CBS8) - Some eyewitnesses to a shooting Friday by a plainclothes Border Patrol agent, who claims he was forced to open fire on a woman behind the wheel of her car, are contradicting the federal officials' version of events.

Border Patrol authorities said that the woman rammed a U.S. Border Patrol agent with a car Friday on a residential South Bay road, hurling him onto the hood of the vehicle and prompting him to fatally shoot her through the windshield in self-defense, authorities reported.

The lawman was in southwestern Chula Vista with other undercover personnel to serve a felony arrest warrant when the dark-green Honda Accord struck him in the 600 block of Moss Street about 1 p.m., according to police and federal officials.

"The agent ... was hit by the vehicle and carried several hundred yards on the hood before, fearing for his life, (he) did discharge his weapon to get the vehicle to stop," Border Patrol Deputy Chief Rodney Scott told reporters.

Area residents described hearing six to eight shots ring out. The woman, identified by her family as 32-year-old Valeria Munique Alvarado, died at the scene.

Some eyewitnesses to the incident have contradicted the Border Patrol's account of the shooting.

"The officer never got struck by the vehicle," said Prince Watson, who told News 8 he saw the encounter. "The vehicle was actually moving in reverse."

Alvarado's family members say they are demanding answers.

"I want justice!" shouted Alvarado's husband, Gilbert Alvarado. "Whoever shot my wife... he needs to get shot. He needs to get justice served."

Medics took the agent to a hospital. Scott said he did not know the extent of his injuries. "But he was impacted by a vehicle pretty hard," the spokesman added.

Alvarado was not the subject of the warrant, Scott told news crews. That suspect remained at large in the late afternoon, he said.

Area resident Hector Salazar told NBC 7 San Diego he was reading his mail in his home when the deadly shooting occurred a short distance away.

"I just saw an agent with a gun walking toward the car and yelling," he said. "But the person inside didn't respond."

The Chula Vista Police Department was investigating the case in conjunction with the Border Patrol and U.S. Inspector General's Office, CVPD Lt. Lon Turner said.


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