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Authorities are investigating the death of a 23-year-old Mexican woman who was found hanging upside down from the U.S. southern border wall last week.

It’s believed she became “ensnared” trying to illegally scale the wall in order to enter Arizona, according to the Cochise County Sheriff’s Office.

“The woman reportedly climbed onto the top of the International Border wall and when attempting to maneuver down on the US side via a harness similar to rappelling, her foot/leg became entangled and she was trapped upside down for a significant amount of time,” the sheriff’s office said in its account of the incident.

The woman’s identity hasn’t been released.

In a statement to The Hill on Tuesday, a Customs and Border Patrol spokesman confirmed that agency is working with the local authorities to investigate the death, but provided little other insight.

“More information will be shared as it becomes available,” the Border Patrol statement reads.

Authorities were first alerted by emergency services from Nogales in Sonora, Mexico about the incident, which happened about 10 miles west of the Douglas, Ariz., port of entry at the International Boundary Barrier.

The woman was transported to a local hospital, where she was pronounced dead.

A spokeswoman for the Cochise County Sheriff’s Office didn’t immediately respond to The Hill’s request for an update on the investigation on Tuesday.

“These types of incidents are not political, they are humanitarian realities that someone has lost a loved one in a senseless tragedy,” Sheriff Mark Dannels said in a statement posted to his office’s Facebook page last week. “We have to do better in finding solutions to the challenges facing our border, and we have to do it for the right reasons. Regardless of opinions, it is the facts that should direct our progress and we will keep working towards a shared goal of border safety and security.”

It’s the latest in a series of deaths of migrants attempting to cross the southern border in recent months, as attempted crossings have seen a dramatic increase this year.

According to Border Patrol’s March statistics, there were 221,303 encounters along the border in March — up 33 percent from the prior month. More than a quarter of those involved people who had at least one prior encounter with authorities in the previous 12 months.

At least 650 migrants died attempting to cross the border in 2021, according to the International Organization for Migration.

Tags Border Patrol immigration migrant crisis southern border

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