The United States in July saw a major decline for the second month in a row in the number of people arrested for illegally crossing the border with Mexico, according to U.S. Customs and Border Protection.
A total of 71,999 people were apprehended by Border Patrol agents after illegally entering the country in Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, and California, CBP announced in a tweet Thursday afternoon.
The Washington Examiner exclusively reported three days earlier that 72,000 people were arrested at the southwest border last month.
Another 10,050 people were deemed inadmissible but not arrested.
CBP released Southwest Border Migration statistics for July—71,999 individuals were apprehended and 10,050 individuals were deemed inadmissible.
862,785 individuals have been apprehended or deemed inadmissible along the SW border in FY19.
— CBP (@CBP)
August 8, 2019
Illegal crossing arrests along the southwest border have dropped about 45% from a peak of 132,000 in May, which was the highest total since 2006. Arrests are an indicator of the rate at which people are attempting to cross illegally.
A CBP spokesman said on Monday that acting Department of Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan was going to announce the July numbers on Thursday during a trip to Yuma, Arizona. CBP Commissioner Mark Morgan was scheduled to discuss border numbers during a press conference later this afternoon.
Officials cited Mexico’s stepped up enforcement efforts for a portion of the people who were prevented from passing through the country on the way to the United States. In addition, summer apprehension rates have historically dropped 16 of the past 17 years due to the extreme heat in that region, which prompts many to make the journey during the spring and fall.