Are Customs and Border Protection Officers allowed to use force?

One concern that many people unfortunately have today is whether the Customs and Border Protection Officers and agents are permitted to use force if a situation escalates. It is important that people know their rights if faced with a confrontation going through customs when entering the United States. Hopefully, no one is faced with this issue, but it is better to be prepared in the event that things get out of hand.

A CPB Officer is permitted to use reasonable force if it is necessary to complete their job. To determine whether the use of force would be considered reasonable, they will consider whether there was an “imminent threat” to the safety of a CPB officer, the risk of injury to others, whether the person actively resisted arrest, as well as a number of other circumstances. The only times in which a CPB officer is permitted to use “deadly force” is if the subject of the force is legitimately attempting to put an officer in jeopardy of serious injury or death. If any object is thrown at an officer, they are not permitted to use their firearms in response.

Hopefully a situation this serious would never come to light but with the world in the state it is in, it is always better to make sure you are informed. Any issue when coming through Customs and Border Protection should be resolved in a peaceful manner and should never result in a violent act by either party. If you have questions regarding the process of going through customs or a border, contact an experienced immigration attorney today for assistance.

John Sesini is an experienced immigration attorney with offices in Green Bay and Milwaukee Wisconsin. If you have any questions regarding these matters, please contact the Sesini Law Group, S.C. and obtain your initial consultation.

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