Texas 'navy' to patrol the Rio Grande
Texas will deploy a fleet of six gunboats on the Rio Grande.
February 29th, 2012
02:11 PM ET

Texas 'navy' to patrol the Rio Grande

Texas is getting its own navy.

Next month, the state's Department of Public Safety will deploy the first of a fleet of six gunboats on the Rio Grande, the river that forms the border between the state and Mexico, CNN affiliate WFAA-TV reports.

The 34-foot-long boats, each powered by three, 300-horsepower outboard engines, will have bulletproof plating and six machine guns apiece, not unlike the river patrol boats the U.S. Navy used during the Vietnam War.

The vessels will be able to operate in as little as 2 feet of water, according to the report, and will work with U.S. Customs and Border Protection to combat drug smuggling coming across the Rio Grande.

"They're finding out when those people are coming across, and one of the things they need to be able to do is interdict them on the water," Texas state Rep. Paul Workman told CNN affiliate KVUE-TV when the first of the boats, the JD Davis, was christened in December.

"If you're trying to suppress organized smuggling activity, there's no substitute for putting people on the ground," Texas Department of Public Safety Director Steven C. McCraw said at the December ceremony. "The way they're operating right now, you need them on the water as well."

"It sends a message: Don't mess with Texas," Jose Rodriguez, a regional commander of the Texas Department of Safety, told WFAA.

The six boats will be named after Texas state troopers killed in the line of duty. The first was named after Jerry Don Davis, who was shot and killed in 1980. Another, to be commissioned Thursday in Austin, will be named in honor of  trooper David Irvine Rucker, who was killed in 1981, according to The Brownsville Herald.

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Filed under: Crime • Drug violence • Drugs • Texas
soundoff (1,047 Responses)
  1. JustOne

    I saw this bad boy at a boat show in Houston in January. They are as mean as the article indicates; big and bad and bristling with high caliber

    February 29, 2012 at 4:45 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Mexican

    Bama and Holder are likely preparing a lawsuit to outlaw this effort.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jj

      dam. YOu beat me to it! They don't have the jeuvos to enfOrce the law of the land. Instead obomba will probably apologize to Mexico just like has done on numorous occasions. Hes such a spineless arrogant piece of work...

      February 29, 2012 at 4:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • Kevin

      Funny you both FAIL to understand that there are more "Boots on the ground" since Obama has been in office than your Guy GW Jr. Deportations are up,

      February 29, 2012 at 5:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • BillCunnane

      We need to invite Obama, Holder and Napolitano for a swim party in the Rio Grande. Then report three illegals attempting to cross into the USA illegally. We get to eliminate 3 slugs at one time.

      February 29, 2012 at 5:07 pm | Report abuse |
    • JD

      Last I checked President Obama has taken out more terrorists around the world with the least amount of US casualties than GW ever did. Last I remember 3000 US service men and women killed in Iraq and Afganistan. It doesn't take brass bolls to send thousands of troops into another country based on lies but it takes some pretty big ones to go into another country to take out a terrorists without that countries permission.

      February 29, 2012 at 5:07 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mexican

      Obama has only deported illegals convicted of crimes (and there are many) while working on backdoor amnesty for the rest. The fact that Clinton and Bush did nothing does not equate to Obama doing enough.

      February 29, 2012 at 8:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • James Nasium

      @JD – when did George Bush or President Obama ever 'take out' any terrorists? I think your ego is writing checks their bodies have never even tried to cash.

      March 1, 2012 at 9:47 am | Report abuse |
  3. crazy media

    More waste of money on the war on drugs. All this does is perpetuate the cycle. Which of course is what our goverment wants. Local, state, and federal. They all prosper from the "war on drugs" without making any real difference or progress.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • Billiam Hillary

      Yeah..lets just let all of those Mexican drug dealers and criminals come on in and set up shop wherever they want, just like they do in Mexico. I volunteer YOU to be the first to move and live right there.

      February 29, 2012 at 4:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • Bustin Buzzella

      Obviously you do not pay attention to the news.

      Cartels hire Mexican Army personnel to cross the border in armored Humvees and boats with .50 caliber machine guns. The every day patrols are not equipped to deal with that, thus these boats were purchased and equipped for the mission.

      How is protecting our borders and children a waste of money?

      February 29, 2012 at 5:07 pm | Report abuse |
  4. kris

    Who is patroling the miles of land along the Canadian border? The last 5 Terrorist suspects came through the Canadian border not Mexico. Just saying.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • Oliver

      Not about terrorists, it's about protecting police, military, prison and drug industry profits.

      February 29, 2012 at 4:52 pm | Report abuse |
    • WeDon'tMatter

      The northern border states state police should buy armored personnel carries with 20mm Vulcans on them to patrol the Canadian border.

      February 29, 2012 at 4:52 pm | Report abuse |
    • specter

      You could push a nuke in a wheelbarrow across the Canadian border.

      February 29, 2012 at 4:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • Billiam Hillary

      98% of Kris's statistics are made up on the spot.

      February 29, 2012 at 4:55 pm | Report abuse |
    • Northway207

      Actually, they flew in. They didn't use a land border crossing. To answer your question, the RCMP, the U.S. Border Patrol, the U.S. and Canadian Coast Guard, the Canadian Provincial Police, the State Police and the county sheriffs, and (in Maine at least) the Maine Warden Service, are all involved to one degree or another with border security. This is not a third world border up here. Its a first world border between two close and cooperating friends. Yes, the 9/11 terrorists flew in to Boston from Canada, but I can assure you the situation today is radically different to what it was, pre-9/11. This border - air, land, and sea, is well patrolled and monitored.

      February 29, 2012 at 5:06 pm | Report abuse |
    • Huh?

      So 20 million illegal Candians have crossed the border up north and come to the US? Wow. Guess I don't get out much....

      March 1, 2012 at 1:48 am | Report abuse |
    • Huh?

      I just realized after reading Kris's post that nearly 2/3 of the Canadian population has crossed the Candian border to come live in the US illegally.
      Sweet. Thanks for the insight Kris.....NOT.

      March 1, 2012 at 1:51 am | Report abuse |
  5. JD

    Put SWCC boats in there. Now that Border patrol

    February 29, 2012 at 4:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • Thunder

      Yea they are nice but with a draft at 5ft,6in due the the bucket brake they would not work on 90% of the Rio.
      But I did like my Vulcan Mini Gun when I was in.

      February 29, 2012 at 5:08 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Starnexus

    I don't like Texas but those are some bad ass boats. Good for them!

    February 29, 2012 at 4:51 pm | Report abuse |
  7. TeaClown

    Spend Spend Spend!

    February 29, 2012 at 4:53 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Merry Prankster

    Do you suppose they use anchors, baby?

    February 29, 2012 at 4:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • WeDon'tMatter

      Nope, they just beach it on a sand bar.

      February 29, 2012 at 5:10 pm | Report abuse |
  9. ray

    texans are a joke. let filthy wet backs in there daily. they have no guts.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • Billiam Hillary

      If ray is such a badazz why doesn't he go down there and show us hot it is done?

      February 29, 2012 at 4:56 pm | Report abuse |
    • ray

      but no claiming to be something nobody down there is,

      February 29, 2012 at 5:05 pm | Report abuse |
    • ray

      my message to texans. If your gonna talk the talk? walk the walk. if your that big bad and tuff should be noooooooooooooooooooooooooproblem some filthy wet balls coming accross that big border. Cause your big bad texans. but i dont see no texas man or woman with kids, going after cartells. or stopping illegals. So really to me your cowards down there....

      you know Sam houston didnt have a fear problem. He handled his mexican problem real good.

      For what ever reason his offspring not so much......lloll....

      the modern texan is nothing but a two bit coward.....no shame......

      imagine letting those browan animals have there way

      February 29, 2012 at 5:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • Thomas

      Come on down here and say that to us, we will see who is a joke then. Also, do you realize how many miles there are between the Gulf of Mexico and the New Mexico border? Since the answer is most likely no, since you are obviously a ignorant hothead- as indicated by your post, this distance is 1254 miles.. over half of the 1900-mile Mexican/United States border. I would like to see your pathetic state make a dent in the illegal immigration/drug smuggling problem we have in this country. Clearly we are doing the best we can and there have been legislative moves within our state government to take an even stronger stance against illegal border activities- including the acquisition of these boats. Clearly you have an opposition of Texas because, like many, you know you are from an inferior place and thus are threatened by the best and brightest beacon of freedom in this country. Sincerely, A passionate, loyal, and steadfast Texan.

      February 29, 2012 at 5:12 pm | Report abuse |
    • ray

      your a bunch of cowards. you know it. mexicans know it. The country knows it. and you men and women hide in your houses daily. while those people come in. This aint about me this is about texans. when you stop being multi culturalists. and start being sam houston texans. meaning people who dont let mexico run there place. Then ill respect you....

      February 29, 2012 at 5:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • Thomas

      Ray, it is becoming clear that you have never been to Texas nor have you ever met a Texan because your opinion would be decidedly contrast to what it currently is. Also, you comment about us being cowards while we sit back and let this happen is the opposite of reality..in fact, this article obviously and efficiently contradicts your remarks (though I wouldn't understand someone with such an obviously loose grip on the English language and proper use of it to comprehend articles intended for those with a post-middle school education).

      February 29, 2012 at 5:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • Aaron

      Ray, you can't spell, your grammar is terrible, you're a racist ..... and you're acting is if Texans need your respect. The reality is you wouldn't make it in Texas.

      March 1, 2012 at 9:48 am | Report abuse |
  10. Dustbowl

    The Rio Grande is only a few feet deep, only 100-150 feet wide, filled with rocks and exposed sand bars, and often is dry before it empties into the Gulf. There is no way those boats could navigate that river–it is an unnavigable waterway. Also, anyone crossing could easily get to one bank or another as soon as they hear the 900hp boat coming. I would guess that the boats are for Lake Amistad and Falcon Reservoir, instead, and that this reporter simply failed to do any fact checking or has been sold a silly story by his or her source.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:56 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Crane

    When Texas became a republic it had a navy, but yielded the navy up when it became a state. Many Texas governors thereafter have made friends and others Admirals in the Texas Navy. Proudly I am one of the Texas Admirals.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:56 pm | Report abuse |
  12. for show

    this is all for show more smoke and mirrors they will not get permission for engagement. If they do the feds will warn of prosecution.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:59 pm | Report abuse |
  13. kris

    The war on drugs is a lost cause the way we currently handle it. You want to win the war on drugs focus on key ones first and work your way backwards. Trying to focus on all of them at the same time is impossible and a waste of money. Start with Heroin, then LSD, then ICE, then cocaine then alcohol as it kills more people than any other drug, then Marijuana. For now leave the peaceful pot heads alone and go after the cracked out heroin, Ice and crack addicts that are the cause of most drug related crimes. As for the others well alcohol is cause for most violence since when consumed it makes people belligerent and aggressive and retarded. Marijuana well it makes people a bit lazier and a bit hungrier but I don't recall anyone getting stoned thinking they are king kong wanting to fight everyone. Last I check most pot heads are pretty peaceful. Most alcoholics clearly display their issues as they are loud, arrogant, dangerous, violent, wishy washy and sloppy. Cocaine makes people violent, aggressive, cloudy, and destroys cells in the body, Heroin, well do I really need to tell you what Heroin does besides kill some people instantly, slowly eats away the human body, completely takes control of the person and dictates their choices. It is also so addictive that violence becomes the last resort once all cash has been drained. LSD well that can permanently damage the brain and cause induced mental retardation through cell destruction. So in the long run I would have to say Marijuana is the safest of the listed drugs. Now compared to most prescription medication well see below.

    Abilify Oral
    Side effects: Dizziness, lightheadedness, nausea, vomiting, tiredness, excess saliva/drooling, blurred vision, weight gain, drowsiness and constipation may occur. If any of these effects persist or worsen, notify your doctor or pharmacist promptly.

    Remember that your doctor has prescribed this medication because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects.

    Tell your doctor immediately if any of these unlikely but serious side effects occur: fast/pounding heartbeat, fainting, mental/mood changes (e.g., increased anxiety, depression, suicidal thoughts), weakness, feelings of restlessness, mask-like facial expression, shakiness (tremors), muscle spasm/stiffness, trouble swallowing, swelling of the ankles/feet.

    Tell your doctor immediately if any of these rare but very serious side effects occur: seizures, signs of infection (such as fever, persistent sore throat).

    This drug may rarely cause a condition known as tardive dyskinesia. In some cases, this condition may be permanent. Tell your doctor immediately if you develop any unusual uncontrolled movements (especially of the face, mouth, tongue, arms or legs).

    This drug may infrequently cause a serious (rarely fatal) nervous system disorder (neuroleptic malignant syndrome). Seek immediate medical attention if you notice any of the following rare but very serious side effects: confusion, fever, fast heartbeat, muscle stiffness, increased sweating, change in the amount of urine.

    A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is unlikely, but seek immediate medical attention if it occurs. Symptoms of a serious allergic reaction include: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing.

    Do I really need to post every medication to prove that most of them are less safe then some of the illegal drugs listed including the legal one of Alcohol. So with that said to win the war on drugs in the long run you need to decide which drugs are really dangerous to human health and society. Then tell companies like Pfizer that unfortunately they are drug dealers selling more harmful drugs.

    February 29, 2012 at 5:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • kris

      P.S. Abilify is for depression so why is one of its side effects depression or suicide. Just saying. Are there really drug dealers of just dealers that the government approves of. Are their really illegal drug dealers or just the people that didn't pay enough to the government back in the early 1900's to be legitimate. I personally think it has to do with how much Pfizer and Johnson and Johnson donate to their campaigns. Sorry but I think the FDA is a complete sham and is just a hired gun to squash any other drug makers. Think about it. Look at the side effects above. Now if Fidel Castro was the CEO of Pfizer do you think their drugs would be legal? The side effects listed are pretty bad. Suicide as a side effect to a prescription your going to write to a depressed person. Come on now. FDA really. Really, really? I can list thousands of medications that are addictive and could possible kill you that you can get a prescription for. I can list one illegal drug that will never kill you nor cause liver damage or kidney damage or cause a need for monthly blood tests to check organs in your body but again I can list thousands of legal ones that do. And the sad part is, you can tell our educational system sucks because most Americans are completely ignorant about any of it. And some have the nerve to even protest against legalization. Ummm. Protest Pfizer as their drugs kill or harm more people each year then Marijuana has in its entire existence.

      February 29, 2012 at 5:11 pm | Report abuse |
  14. j r brown

    It's about time

    February 29, 2012 at 5:03 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Captain Obvious

    Legalize drugs and the Mexican drug problem goes away. Prohibition on drugs has had the exact same effect as the prohibition of alcohol. They both have made organized crime rich and powerful. While making a lot of corpses. With no positive results to show for it.

    February 29, 2012 at 5:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • Thomas

      Good idea.. I think it would be great to live in a country that allows people to use cocaine, heroin, and ecstasy available for over the counter use. That way I could have even more fun conversations with my kids regarding not driving while using impairing substance but now I'd get to add in, "ohh yeah, and if you do too much blow, please just call a cab." Get real Capt., you are comparing apples to oranges.

      February 29, 2012 at 5:28 pm | Report abuse |
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