PHOENIX — Mexican federal police have arrested two men who may be connected with the fatal shooting of a U.S. Border Patrol agent just north of the Mexico-Arizona border, a Mexican law enforcement official said Thursday.
The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to release the information, said it was unclear if there was strong evidence linking the men to the shooting death of Agent Nicholas Ivie, the Associated Press reported.
Ivie, 30, and two other agents were fired on Tuesday in a rugged hilly area about 5 miles north of the border near Bisbee, Ariz., as they responded to an alarm that was triggered on one of the sensors the government has installed along the border.
The wounded agent was shot in the ankle and buttocks and released from the hospital after undergoing surgery. The third agent wasn't injured.
Brenda Nath, an FBI spokeswoman in Arizona, and Border Patrol officials in Arizona declined to comment on the detention of the two men in Mexico. The Cochise County Sheriff's Office, which is also investigating the shooting, didn't immediately respond to requests for comment.
Lydia Antonio, a spokeswoman for the Mexican Embassy in Washington, confirmed only that the men were detainted.
At a news conference Thursday in Washington, Attorney General Eric Holder said he is getting updates on the investigation's progress and has spoken with Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano about it.
Authorities have declined to provide key details about Tuesday's shooting, including what they think prompted it, whether the agents were ambushed and whether any guns were recovered. Still, they suspect that more than one person fired on the agents.
Ivie's death marked the first fatal shooting of an agent since a deadly 2010 firefight with Mexican bandits that killed U.S. Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry in December 2010 and spawned congressional investigations of a botched government gun-smuggling investigation.