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Curious incident while traveling through New Mexico, June 2007

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posted on Dec, 27 2009 @ 07:26 PM
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In late June (near the 28th, I believe) 2007, a friend and I were driving through New Mexico on our way to California. We had camped the night before in Tucumcari, NM at a KOA camp after driving all day the day before, coming west from Missouri.

After leaving the camp early that morning, we were traveling west along interstate 40 towards Albuquerque through the scrubland. I was driving my worn-out old '92 Astro along the gradually rising highway, and it was struggling. The engine had almost no power at all, and the long slopes were taking their toll. Cars were passing me like I was parked (I believe the speed limit is 80MPH there, and I was lucky to break 55).

This went on for miles and miles, until suddenly I noticed there was one vehicle that didn't go zooming past me. A tan pickup had pulled alongside me, barely going any faster than me. I barely noticed it at first, until two things made me pay attention; indeed, they startled me out of my desert-induced reverie quite suddenly.

The first thing I noticed, as the truck slowly passed and then settled into a position exactly one car-length ahead of me in the lane to my left, was that this tan pickup (with a tan camper shell and a black utility box hanging off of the tailgate) had US government plates. The second and rather alarming thing that I noticed was that the man in the passenger seat was looking straight back at the front of my van, and indeed was either filming or photographing me constantly. There's definitely something very unsettling about seeing a US government agent's face hidden behind the lens of a camera, staring back at you while you're driving through the desert at 55MPH.

So as I spotted this, my friend had been talking. I said to him "uh, they're filming us." A silence hung over both of us, and a sense of dread. (We had done nothing wrong, mind: we were on a road trip. We were planning on attending a major gaming event in San Diego set to happen a few days later. We had nothing illegal with us, and in fact I had never been to New Mexico before.)

The man with the camera continued capturing images or video, and after a while the truck picked up speed, and took off towards the horizon like the rest of traffic.

However, not long after, the same truck (or an identical one) appeared in front of us again. We had caught back up with it somehow (while traveling very much under the speed limit). It took up a position directly in front of me, in my lane. To my dismay, I glanced in the rearview mirror and noticed that a second tan US gov't truck had pulled in behind me. I was surrounded in front and back by unmarked gov't vehicles in the middle of the New Mexico Desert, one of which had previously, creepily filmed me. I was not feeling very confident at this point.

My friend and I were terrified now. What did they want? What part of the government did they work for? We didn't know, and at the time we didn't want to know. We decided on a plan to determine their intentions with us: we'd exit the highway and go to a gas station. If they followed us, at least we'd be someplace public.

We drove on like this for several miles, until finally an exit appeared. I decided to wait until the last minute to put my signal on to exit. At the last possible second, just as I was going to hit the signal, both trucks bailed off onto the exit. I watched in the rearview, shaken, and saw them turn south onto the highway that we had just crossed. My friend and I breathed a sigh of relief. No more tan US gov't trucks appeared for the remainder of our trip.

I've told this story to several people since that day. My friend and I assumed, at the time, that perhaps the trucks were US border patrol? After all, I was driving a plain white Astro van with tinted rear passenger windows and out-of-state plates. But why would they film me? Why not pull me over?




posted on Dec, 27 2009 @ 07:26 PM
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I would have been happy if the first truck had pulled me over, declared their suspicions (if they had any), and asked to see in the back if they thought I was harboring illegal immigrants. But they just filmed me in an extremely unsettling way, sped off, and then came back to box me in.

And aren't border patrol vehicles clearly marked? Like this?

ATS community, what happened to me that day? Who did I meet, and what did they want with me?


Edit to add: if memory serves me, the trucks exited the highway at highway 3, and went south. I remember it was either there, or somewhere very near there, because I looked at the map after they left us alone to see how close we were to Roswell. I don't want to jump to any conclusions, though.

[edit on 27-12-2009 by AshOnMyTomatoes]



posted on Dec, 27 2009 @ 07:41 PM
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I've told this story to several people since that day. My friend and I assumed, at the time, that perhaps the trucks were US border patrol? After all, I was driving a plain white Astro van with tinted rear passenger windows and out-of-state plates. But why would they film me? Why not pull me over?


By Jove I think you finally figured it out. It is not like smuggling Coyotes never used old beater vans with blacked out windows and drive extra careful on the interstate.

Filming you it is called evidence and to CYA in case you were hauling illegals and they tried to bail and then claim abuse.



posted on Dec, 27 2009 @ 07:48 PM
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I think it would be interesting if you had started filming them back.

You know you'll never get an answer on this one, right?



posted on Dec, 27 2009 @ 07:51 PM
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Originally posted by Signals
I think it would be interesting if you had started filming them back.

You know you'll never get an answer on this one, right?
I think I would have been too freaked out to film them back.

And why wouldn't I get an answer?

I mean, the border patrol answer sounds pretty plausible, but the whole scenario seemed so unreal. Maybe it's because I don't live in a border state and I'm not used to such things.

[edit on 27-12-2009 by AshOnMyTomatoes]



posted on Dec, 27 2009 @ 08:15 PM
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My thinking is that the guy filming you would have to post here for you to get the true answer...

I wonder if it was the famous "Camo Dudes"?

It would have seriously freaked me out too!



posted on Dec, 27 2009 @ 08:16 PM
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I was in California last year, very close to the border of Mexico. I encountered several Border Patrol vehicles and none of them were tan. They were white and clearly marked. I am no expert though, just relating what I saw. Did you see or do anything the night before in the campground that may have alerted the athorities?

Edited once again to correct spelling and grammar.

[edit on 27-12-2009 by Vikingwolf]

[edit on 27-12-2009 by Vikingwolf]



posted on Dec, 27 2009 @ 08:18 PM
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Originally posted by calcoastseeker



I've told this story to several people since that day. My friend and I assumed, at the time, that perhaps the trucks were US border patrol? After all, I was driving a plain white Astro van with tinted rear passenger windows and out-of-state plates. But why would they film me? Why not pull me over?


By Jove I think you finally figured it out. It is not like smuggling Coyotes never used old beater vans with blacked out windows and drive extra careful on the interstate.

Filming you it is called evidence and to CYA in case you were hauling illegals and they tried to bail and then claim abuse.
Are they really allowed to just film you while you're driving though? Does anyone here know off-hand what NM border patrol trucks look like? (I want to think they're white with a stripe, like in the picture I linked above.) Why didn't they pull me over and ask me?



posted on Dec, 27 2009 @ 08:20 PM
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Originally posted by Vikingwolf
I was in California last year, very close to the border of Mexico. I encountered several Border Patrol vehicles and none of them were tan. They were white and clearly marked. I am no expert though, just relating what I saw.
I saw some trucks I knew for sure were border patrol near the AZ/CA/Mexico border. They were white and had "Border Patrol" in huge letters, and they had Arizona plates. Do the trucks vary in color from state to state?

[edit on 27-12-2009 by AshOnMyTomatoes]



posted on Dec, 27 2009 @ 08:49 PM
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reply to post by AshOnMyTomatoes
 


Sounds just like a couple goverment workers with nothing do on their long boreing desert rides but mess with the heads of out of staters.
Beats racing the jackrabbits and tumble weeds.



posted on Dec, 27 2009 @ 08:49 PM
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i live in Carlsbad, New Mexico which is less than three hours from the US/Mexico border at El Paso/Juarez

the majority of Border Patrol vehicles that i have seen (and known what i was seeing) were like the one on this page

there are various other vehicles in any given area, in the field, doing the same jobs that the green-and-white official-looking rigs do. here is an example

look through those images and see if you see anything familiar
that is the US Customs and Border Protection website, which is a Federal agency. All states in which the Border Patrol operates have the same trucks, equipment, etc.

you're right - it does sound pretty convincing EXCEPT for a few things that don't fit, at all; that i know only because i have lived in New Mexico all my life, but that most might not realize.

the first is the physical location of where this happened. Tucumcari is pretty far North to believe it was Border Patrol. And unless you are Mexican, or look like a Mexican in your coloring and appearance, there doesn't seem to be any reason that Border Patrol would act like that.

secondly, is the fact of your license plate. you have Missouri tags, right? that fact would make it far less likely to attract the attention of the Border Patrol.

and i am correct in understanding that this happened on I-40?

so i have a couple of questions for you:
you didn't notice anything similar across the border to Arizona?
did you pass through the checkpoints?
what happened there?
where did you stop in New Mexico, after leaving camp but before encountering these *paparazzi*?


[edit on 12/27/2009 by queenannie38]



posted on Dec, 27 2009 @ 09:09 PM
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Originally posted by queenannie38
i live in Carlsbad, New Mexico which is less than three hours from the US/Mexico border at El Paso/Juarez

the majority of Border Patrol vehicles that i have seen (and known what i was seeing) were like the one on this page

there are various other vehicles in any given area, in the field, doing the same jobs that the green-and-white official-looking rigs do. here is an example

look through those images and see if you see anything familiar
that is the US Customs and Border Protection website, which is a Federal agency. All states in which the Border Patrol operates have the same trucks, equipment, etc.

you're right - it does sound pretty convincing EXCEPT for a few things that don't fit, at all; that i know only because i have lived in New Mexico all my life, but that most might not realize.

the first is the physical location of where this happened. Tucumcari is pretty far North to believe it was Border Patrol. And unless you are Mexican, or look like a Mexican in your coloring and appearance, there doesn't seem to be any reason that Border Patrol would act like that.

secondly, is the fact of your license plate. you have Missouri tags, right? that fact would make it far less likely to attract the attention of the Border Patrol.

and i am correct in understanding that this happened on I-40?

so i have a couple of questions for you:
you didn't notice anything similar across the border to Arizona?
did you pass through the checkpoints?
what happened there?
where did you stop in New Mexico, after leaving camp but before encountering these *paparazzi*?


[edit on 12/27/2009 by queenannie38]
I didn't see any vehicles in those pages that matched what I saw that day. They were tan pickups with tan camper shells, US Gov't plates, and a black locker on the tailgate that looks a bit like those metal boxes you see on the back of Jeeps.

As for your other questions:

As far as I remember, we didn't stop anywhere between Tucumcari and the highway where these trucks got off (which I'm almost positive was Highway 3, I remember a single digit), unless maybe we got gas and water at filling station somewhere right along I-40. After this incident, we drove to Albuquerque and restocked on bottled water again at the Walmart there, drove around the city for a few minutes trying to figure out how to get back to the highway, and headed for Flagstaff. We ate lunch in Flagstaff and camped in Black Canyon City KOA between Flagstaff and Phoenix on Hwy 17. Then we went around Phoenix, and headed for the direct route to San Diego along Highway 8. Nothing else unusual happened. We were never stopped by border patrol, but we did see some of them, I believe around Yuma, AZ, and I noticed that they were easy to spot.



posted on Dec, 27 2009 @ 10:31 PM
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Hmmm..........tan vehicles with state plates on them? Dunno. Just seems like fun and games to me, from some folks that have nothing better to do.
Not federal border patrol, at least from my experiences, living in the southwest. Taking video or photos? Yeah, it's legal to do this on a public highway. Anybody. I used to drive my daughter around Cincinnati and she would yell, "Hey!", and take photos of folks who looked up sort of surprised, or just with a dumb look on their faces, like most people would react.Was she just fu*&ing with folks? Yep. And we have an entire album of these photos, just for the interest in how people react to being yelled, "Hey", at.

Dunno. Strange things happen, especially while driving in the desert, mesmerized by the smell of the warm poleetas (sp?).

This was a while ago. Seems like it's all over. Don't fret. More weird stuff will occur during your life.



posted on Dec, 27 2009 @ 10:38 PM
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could have been scanning your van with some sort of heat detecting camera to see if you were smuggling illegals.

Second line.



posted on Dec, 27 2009 @ 11:38 PM
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reply to post by AshOnMyTomatoes
 


so the Border Patrol you saw in Yuma were nothing like the photographer's vehicle?

and the photographer's vehicle had New Mexico plates?
what did they look like, exactly?



posted on Dec, 28 2009 @ 12:21 AM
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reply to post by queenannie38
 


The photographer's truck had US Government plates. Very plain, a dark grey or black with plain printing and no license plate art. The ones I saw on actual border patrol in Yuma had AZ state plates that were easy to recognize.



posted on Dec, 28 2009 @ 05:43 PM
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that's just STRANGE

but i don't really even have the slightest clue what it was all about

New Mexico is a strange place, anyway
"The Land of Enchantment"

it really is
but i dig it

did you like New Mexico, otherwise?
and the general "out west," did you like it?



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