In Memory of Border Patrol Agent Robert Mark Hotten

In Memory of Border Patrol Agent Robert Mark Hotten

On Sunday, October 6, 2019, Arizona residents learned that a local border patrol agent had died in the line of duty. Border Patrol Agent Robert Mark Hotten, age 44, suffered a fatal heart attack while on duty. Hotten had been a sworn officer with the US Border Patrol for over ten years.

Border Patrol Agent Hotten had gone out in the area of Mount Washington just south of Patagonia with two other agents when a ground sensor had been activated. The ground sensor indicated that possibly seven subjects, or illegal aliens, were in the sensor area. The first sensor was activated about 1:00 pm.

The agents diligently searched the area looking for the subjects. As they searched, one of the seven subjects was taken into custody. After attempting to reach Agent Hotten with no response, the officers immediately searched and called for assistance.

The officers found Agent Hotten, who was unresponsive. It appeared that he might have a head injury from falling on rocks. He was found at approximately 4:15 pm. The area that the officers were working is well-known for its rugged and remote location. The location interfered with being able to move Agent Hotten immediately.

The officers worked in the afternoon and early evening Arizona heat, desperately attempting to save their friend and coworker. The agents assisted with medical aid and performed CPR for more than two hours. Finally, he had to be carried down a steep mountainside to reach the ambulance.

Despite attempts from the agents, Hotten passed away before he arrived at the hospital in Nogales. The most recent assignment for Agent Hotten was working in the Tucson Sector.

Agent Hotten had served with the United States Border Patrol for ten years and was assigned to the Tucson Sector.

United States Department of Homeland Security

Founded in November 2002, the federal government voted to enact the creation of the US Department of Homeland Security or DHS. This was in response to the September 11 Terrorist Attacks. The department brings together multiple law enforcement agencies under one umbrella to better protect national security.

After nineteen years, the agency has more than 240,000 employees and operates on an annual budget of over $52 billion.

Customs and Border Protection

Headquartered in Washington, DC, the US Customs and Border Protection or CBP is the largest federal-level law enforcement agency in DHS. CBP is the primary border control organization for the United States. The agents who work with CBP have many responsibilities, including regulating and facilitating international trade, collecting import duties, and enforcing US regulations, including trade, customs, and immigration.

As one of the largest law enforcement agencies in the US, it employs more than 45,600 sworn federal agents and officers.

Tucson Sector

According to the CBP website, the Tucson Sector covers most of the state of Arizona. The last assignment for Agent Hotten was in the Tucson Sector. This officer covers more than 262 border miles and is known to be the busiest sector of the CBP. This district hauls in more illegal aliens and narcotics seizures than any other CBP office. Today, the Tucson Sector operates across nine stations with approximately 3700 sworn agents.


Border Patrol Agent Robert Marke Hotten leaves behind his wife, son, mother, brother, and sister. Many local law enforcement agencies will join CBP agents to escort Hotten to his final resting place. As the Hotten family faces their grief, the community, friends, and family will be there for their support.

CBP Commissioner Mark Morgan announced the loss on social media. “Last night, we lost one of our own, US Border Patrol Agent Robert Hotten. Agent Hotten was found unresponsive while on patrol in AZ. Agent Hotten, Class 910, served for ten years in USBP. My thoughts and prayers are with his wife, son, loved ones, and colleagues.”