More than 1 million people entered U.S. illegally in first six months of 2021

From January through July, the number totaled more than 1.1 million, enough to create the 10th largest city in the U.S.

Published: August 7, 2021 2:31pm

Updated: August 7, 2021 10:52pm

(The Center Square) -

The number of people entering the U.S. illegally who were processed by Border Patrol from January through July of this year totaled more than 1.1 million, enough to create the 10th largest city in the U.S. and more than the populations of nine states individually.

Currently, the tenth largest city is San Jose, Calif., with a population of 1.03 million.

To date, the number is also greater than each of the populations of Wyoming (581,075), Vermont (623,251), Alaska (724,357), North Dakota (770,026), South Dakota (896,581), Delaware (990,334), Rhode Island (1,061,509), Montana (1,085,004) and the District of Columbia (714,153).

If the numbers continue at the current rate, those crossing the southern border illegally will total close to the population of the fourth largest city of Houston, with a population of 2.3 million, a population greater than 15 states and the District of Columbia.

These numbers exclude the estimated 30,000 to 50,000 who reportedly evade capture every month.

In July, more than 210,000 people entered the U.S. across the Southwest border, an increase from 188,829 in June — primarily through the Rio Grande Valley and Del Rio sectors of Texas.

In the Rio Grande Valley sector, described as the "epicenter of the current surge," Border Patrol agents stopped roughly 78,000 people in July, up from 59,380 in June and 51,149 in May. These numbers exclude the tens of thousands who have evaded capture.

According to preliminary data from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, the daily average encountered by Border Patrol was 6,779, including 616 unaccompanied children and 2,583 family units.

In July, roughly 19,000 unaccompanied children came through, surpassing the previously highest number of 18,877, recorded in March. In June, 15,253 unaccompanied children entered the U.S. illegally.

In July, the second-highest number of families in recorded history — 80,000 — came through, up from 55,805 in June. The highest number, 88,857, entered in May 2019.

Border Patrol officials say their facilities are strained with 17,778 people in custody as of Sunday alone, with the Rio Grande Valley sector holding 10,002.

July's preliminary total of 210,000 is the highest number of people recorded entering the U.S. illegally in over 20 years. Since January, Border Patrol has found that people have come from over 150 countries.

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