Photographer behind controversial photos speaks exclusively to KTSM

EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) – The photographer behind images depicting border patrol officers on horseback told KTSM things are not exactly what they appear to be when it comes to the photos.

The photographs, which were taken on Sunday, appear to show officers on horseback with whips in hand. The photos sparked outrage because from some angles they appear to show border patrols flogging migrants, but photographer Paul Ratje said he and his colleagues had never seen officers flogging anyone. that is.

“Some of the Haitian men started running, trying to get around the horses,” Ratje said.

Ratje is a photographer based in Las Cruces and has been in Del Rio since Friday. He said he took the photos from the Mexican side.

“I never saw them whip anyone,” Ratje said. “He was rocking it, but that can be misinterpreted when you look at the photo.”

The photos drew huge criticism from many on social media and the White House said it would investigate.

White House press secretary Jen Psaki called the footage “horrific.”

Vice President Kamala Harris was also asked about the photos and called them deeply disturbing. Harris also said there was a thorough investigation into how officers treat migrants.

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