Ignacio Ramos and Jose Alonso Compean
Former Border Patrol agents Ignacio Ramos and Jose Compean left their cells in solitary confinement to reunite with their families in El Paso, Texas, today.
“He said, ‘I love you.’ And he just embraced me,” Monica Ramos said on Fox News’ Glenn Beck television show today in the first interview following their release.
After serving two years in federal prison in solitary confinement for shooting a fleeing Mexican drug smuggler who had brought 750 pounds of marijuana into the U.S., Ramos and Compean are being released into home confinement until March 20. The news came only two weeks after the Federal Bureau of Prisons told WND they could be eligible to finish sentences at home.
The Bureau of Prisons has instructed them to wear ankle bracelets and refrain from speaking to the press until their official release date.
“It was wonderful,” Ramos said of her exciting day. “It’s gone by pretty fast, so we can only hope the next 33 days go as fast.”
Ramos said their children are “extremely excited” about seeing their father.
“They had a couple of minutes with their father, here,” she said. “It’s really overwhelming for them. They finally hugged their dad, and they know it’s real. In time, I think we’ll begin the healing process.”
She said her husband looked relieved when she first saw him in the airport.
“He just looked around, just very appreciative, looking around and just absorbing the environment that he was in.”
Patty Compean (left), Monica Ramos (right). Boys on wives’ laps are Compean’s sons Eric Alonso and David Antonio. Boys in back are Ramos’ sons, Aaron and Ryan. Ramos’ son, Jacob, and Compean’s daughter, Anna Belle, are in front. (photo: Ramos, Compean families)
Patty Compean told the Glenn Beck television show that her family needed time to spend with Jose before participating in interviews.
“They’ve been in solitary confinement without any human contact except for the guards and visitors for two years,” Patty Compean told WND when she first learned of the commutation. “Things have changed. Jose’s been gone for two years. That’s a lot to take in.”
Several media personalities asked to witness the homecoming, including Lou Dobbs, Glenn Beck and Sean Hannity, but Patty said her family is not ready for the crowd.
“Everybody has contributed in one way or another to this,” she told WND. “Honestly, at this point, I’d love to have people there, but at the same time, I want to have that moment for us. It’s been two years.”
Ramos’ attorney, David Botsford, said the families are still waiting for a decision from the Supreme Court on the cases.
“We’ve asked the Supreme Court to review the convictions on the remaining counts that the Fifth Circuit had not set aside because it’s our goal to vindicate these gentlemen entirely and get them back on the job with law enforcement, which is what their dreams and their goals and their careers have been.”
Beck asked why Ramos would ever consider returning to law enforcement positions when the government “sold him down the river.”
“Well, he may not trust his government, but he loves his country,” Botsford replied. “He wants to serve, as he has done with honor and distinction in the past. And that’s what his career aspirations are and hopefully we’ll get them both back to that spot if that’s what they so desire.”
In the interview with Beck, Rep. Ted Poe, R-Texas, summarized a number of falsehoods Congress had been told about the border agents’ case.
“We were told that these two border agents went out that day to shoot an illegal, which is an absolute lie,” he said. “We were also told that they knew that the drug dealer was unarmed. That is a lie. They both believed him to be armed. But, most importantly, the U.S. attorney’s office told us … that the drug dealer didn’t bring in drugs a second time. … I figured out that was a lie, too.”
He continued, “Both these individuals were political prisoners. We want to get to the bottom of what the involvement of the Mexican government was in prosecuting these two guys. ”
Poe said he believes that there’s a real problem on both sides of the border and that this was the only case where the U.S. attorney’s office went on a “nationwide Madison Avenue PR stunt” to justify prosecution.
“It just seems like there’s a rat in the room,” Poe said. “And we want to get rid of it.”