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Border Patrol Agent and El Centro Union President Arrested and Charged with Violent Felonies Allowed to Plea to Lesser Charges.


Senior Border Patrol Agent and former El Centro Sector Union President Mike Matzke. (Source: Facebook)


On April 23, 2024, Senior Border Patrol Agent Michael Roland Matzke will be allowed to plea to misdemeanor charges instead being tried by a jury of his peers for the violent felonies he was originally charged with in October of 2022. This is a common outcome of domestic violence cases involving Border Patrol agents whether they are senior ranking officials or junior.


According to the Lautenberg Amendment which was passed in 1968, those convicted of domestic violence crimes are prevented from being able to purchase, own or receive firearms or ammunition. These charges must be felonies for the Amendment to take effect and would prevent Agent Matzke from being a federal agent any longer if he could not possess a firearm as it is a required part of his employment with the agency.


The County of Imperial's Superior Court website shows that Agent Matzke, who was the president of the El Centro Sector's Border Patrol Union prior to his arrest, was originally charged with 5 misdemeanors and 2 serious violent felonies involving guns. If he were to stand trial and be convicted of these 2 felonies, Agent Matzke would lose his job and his pension.



Imperial County California Superior Court Records

As noted in the original complaint filed with the court by Imperial County District Attorney George Marquez, Agent Matzke is accused of assaulting the victim with a firearm and "did commit a FELONY, namely: CRIMINAL THREATS a violation of Section 422(a) of the Penal Code of the State of California, in that said defendants): did willfully and unlawfully threaten to commit a crime which would result in death and great bodily injury to (the victim)with the

specific intent that the statement be taken as a threat. IT IS FURTHER ALLEGED that the threatened crime, on its face and under the circumstances in which it was made, was so unequivocal, unconditional, immediate and specific as to convey to (the victim) a gravity of purpose and an immediate was reasonably prospect of execution. IT IS FURTHER ALLEGED that the said to (the victim) was reasonably in sustained fear of his/her safety and the safety of his/her immediate family." Notably, District Attorney Marquez and the likely the court is in possession of videos that clearly show Agent Matzke threatening the victim with a gun and threatening to kill himself.



Imperial County California Superior Court Records


As with most cases involving crimes committed by Border Patrol agents, they take their time crawling through the courts with constant motions to extend often used by defense attorneys to wear down victim's resolve for justice. Most recently, the court cancelled the jury trial and issued a notice of a plea agreement and sentencing on April 23rd. This means that District Attorney Marquez will likely drop the violent felony charges allowing Agent Matzke to keep his job and his pension as he is still employed with the US Border Patrol. Additionally, this means none of the evidence will be entered into the court as to his alleged actions and the case will disappear along with the video.


Imperial County California Superior Court Records

Should this plea deal be accepted by the court, Agent Matzke will join the ranks of many other agents charged with violent felonies who are allowed to plea down to lessor charges in order to avoid having their gun rights taken and losing their jobs. Customs and Border Protection's Office of Professional Responsibility has been following the case for nearly 2 years now with no known disciplinary or removal proceedings from the Border Patrol. Agent Matzke is close to retirement and will likely be awarded for his service with a lifetime of taxpayer dollars.




Sources:


Imperial County Superior Court Case JCF006359 - People vs Michael Roland Matzke filed October 31, 2022.

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