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Mom Of Boy Killed By Illegal Border Crosser Speaks Out: ‘His Life Was Taken Way Too Early By Someone Who Shouldn’t Be Here’

Alex Wise Jr. holds his little sister
Image CreditImage courtesy Sykia Benson

Not even the most heartfelt gestures from the community can take away the pain a mother feels after her son’s preventable death.

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MIDLAND, Texas — Alex Wise Jr. would have turned 11 years old in May, but he won’t be at his birthday party this year. Instead of celebrating another trip around the sun for Wise, his extended family will gather without him to honor his 10 short years on Earth.

“I wish he was here. I really do wish I had him here. But unfortunately, his life was taken way too early by someone who wasn’t even supposed to be in the country,” Sykia Benson, Wise’s mom, told The Federalist.

Wise became one of the many victims of the ongoing border invasion in February, shortly after he was struck and killed by an illegal border crosser as he headed home from school. The elementary school student used to ride the bus, but after his family moved apartments, he was asked to walk.

Thursday, February 8 was Wise’s first and last day to walk his new after-school route. Before the 10-year-old could even make it to the stop sign where someone was waiting to meet him, Wise was hit by a truck driven by an illegal border crosser.

“Everybody else let [Wise] cross the street but this car was so impatient that it went around. And he was almost on the grass, like a step away from being on the grass when he got hit,” Benson said.

Rogelio Ortiz Olivas, a 50-year-old Mexico native who re-crossed President Joe Biden’s open border after facing deportation at least five times previously, was registered as intoxicated at the time of the crash. He fled the scene but was later arrested after an officer at a traffic stop noticed his damaged truck hood bearing an “impression of a skull.”

Ortiz Olivas faces a third-degree felony of “hit and run, accident causing death” charge for “driver negligence” and failing to stop and render aid. Local arrest records confirm that, to this day, the Midland County Sheriff’s Office is holding Ortiz for “collision involving serious bodily injury,” “driving while intoxicated,” and an immigration detainer.

Benson says police told her Ortiz Olivas had a New Mexico driver’s license and the vehicle he drove was in his name.

“Somebody helped him get identification,” Benson said. “Somebody helped him in New Mexico get an ID.”

The Midland Police Department did not immediately respond to The Federalist’s questions about this alleged driver’s license and whether it was still valid at the time of the incident. It wouldn’t be impossible, however, for an illegal border crosser like Ortiz Olivas to have obtained a standard license at some point under New Mexico’s lax ID laws.

‘The Sweetest Kid’

Benson received the devastating call that her son was injured and would be life-flighted to the nearby city of Lubbock for medical care as she was picking up her father from the local airport. By the next day, Benson’s “sweet,” “helpful,” and “friendly” boy was gone.

“He was a kid. He got into things,” Benson recalled. “But he was still just a sweet, sweet person.”

Wise wasn’t just sweet, he was also smart, making mostly A’s and B’s in school. When he wasn’t learning math, his favorite subject, Wise was playing sports with friends

“He loved football, basketball, soccer. He loved it all. He was about to start playing football. He already played basketball and soccer,” Benson said.

Wise also loved playing with his one-year-old sister. Benson said her daughter doesn’t quite understand Wise’s absence but she recognizes it.

“I don’t think she knows too much now but you can definitely see a void where she’s used to running to him, running in his room,” Benson said.

As for Benson, she’s taking things “day by day.”

“I feel like I’m at a standstill because it’s surreal that he’s gone,” Benson said through tears.

A Preventable Death

Since Wise’s passing, Benson and her family have received an outpouring of support from their church, friends, and Wise’s school, which promised to erect a park bench in her son’s name. But not even the most heartfelt gestures can take away the pain she feels when she wakes up early to take her son to school only to remember he’s not there.

“It’s been hard. Trying to get used to him not being here, it’s been really, really difficult,” Benson said.

One of the most unexpected parts of her grieving process, Benson said, is her concern that a tragedy like the one her son endured could happen again. She said her son’s death could have been prevented if the United States had better deportation enforcement and border security.

“There should be laws put in place where if you’re deported one time and you get caught a second time, it should be mandatory automatic jail time. So you keep sending them back and they keep coming over and they’re getting over some kind of way. It’s no control over the border,” Benson said.

Currently, Benson does not know when legal justice against her son’s alleged killer will be served.

“I actually haven’t heard anything from anyone,” Benson. “Nobody’s been informing me about anything. I’ve been going to them and they still don’t know too much.”

The Midland County District Attorney’s Office confirmed to The Federalist on Wednesday that there are no scheduled court dates for Ortiz Olivas.

No matter how long the wait, Benson hopes justice will come for “the sweetest kid ever.”


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