The head of U.S. Customs and Border Protection said he did not disclose the death of a 7-year-old girl at the border during his testimony to Congress because he wasn’t sure that the mother had been notified and because he didn’t want to “risk politicizing the death of a child.”
Kevin McAleenan, the commissioner of the agency, testified Dec. 11 before the Senate Judiciary Committee, three days after the death of Jakelin Caal Maquin. The Guatemalan girl died while in CBP custody after crossing the U.S.-Mexico border with her father, Nery Gilbert Caal Cruz.
An internal investigation by the Homeland Security Department Inspector General into Jakelin's death is ongoing. Her family on Saturday called for a "thorough investigation" into the circumstances of her death.