DEL RIO, Texas—“My house looks like Fort Knox at night,” Teresa Esther Chapoy said, pointing to the lights she installed around the outside of her home and the fence she put up in her backyard.
Chapoy, 70, lives a mile from the U.S.-Mexico border here in Del Rio, 156 miles west of San Antonio. Standing in her driveway, she told The Daily Signal that it’s not uncommon for her to see illegal immigrants walking down her street or even running across her property.
In August, Chapoy says, she filmed a group of migrants walking on her street who had just crossed over the border from Mexico.
Her home hasn’t been broken into, she said, crediting her guard dog, an American Bully she rescued from a shelter.
On Monday night, Chapoy said, her dog was barking quite loudly. She got up to look out the window, but saw nothing.
The next morning, Chapoy was talking with a neighbor, who told her a search helicopter had been flying over her home around the same time that the dog was barking.
“They were looking for somebody. And, you know, I don’t know who was here, but somebody may have been here,” Chapoy said, adding, “That’s a typical day.”
Chapoy has lived in Del Rio since she was a little girl, and the land she lives on now first belonged to her grandfather. There was a time, she says, when she felt safe to leave the windows open at night to let the cool breeze in. But no more.
“Now, I’m locked up,” she said.
Asked whether she ever considers moving away from the border, Chapoy said, “I’ve thought about it, but where would I go? … I will not run away. I’m staying and fighting, come what may.”
Americans “need to understand that what’s happening here is moving into their backyards,” Chapoy said.
“And Martha’s Vineyard … that was nothing, that was just 50 [migrants],” she said, referring to the 48 illegal immigrants from Venezuela flown by Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis earlier this month to the resort island off the coast of Massachusetts.
Local leaders in Texas border towns such as Del Rio and Eagle Pass say migrants pass through their communities every day, but they’re not staying. Instead, they’re moving into the interior of the United States.
Just down the street from Chapoy’s home on Tuesday morning, two migrants waited with a baby for Border Patrol after crossing illegally into America.
The couple had traveled to Texas from Colombia and told The Daily Signal that they hope to go to Chicago.
Content created by Virginia Allen
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