County Freeholders Celebrate Release of Marine Sgt. Andrew Tahmooressi From Mexican Prison

freeholder little TLSMore than eight months after he was arrested by Mexican police and jailed south of the border on a questionable weapons charge, decorated Marine Sgt. Andrew Tahmooressi is back in the United States.

“Today the Ocean County Board of Chosen Freeholders joins all Americans in welcoming Sgt. Tahmooressi back home,” said Freeholder Gerry P. Little. “Ocean County is home to more veterans than any other county in New Jersey and on their behalf, and on behalf of all of our residents, we are thankful for Sgt. Tahmooressi’s safe return.”

Last summer the board unanimously passed a resolution encouraging President Obama to work with Mexican authorities to win the Marine’s release.

“We stood hand in hand along with nearly 100 members of Congress and hundreds of thousands of Americans in demanding Sgt. Tahmooressi’s release,” Little said.

Tahmooressi was arrested by Mexican police on March 31st after accidentally crossing the border while carrying three legally registered firearms, along with nearly all his other belongings, in the back of his Ford pickup.

The Marine had recently moved to Southern California from Florida to undergo treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder and said he became lost while driving near the border.

“Records clearly show that Sgt. Tahmooressi immediately realized he had made a wrong turn and tried to return to the American side of the border,” said Freeholder Director Joseph H. Vicari. “He instantly disclosed to Mexican authorities that the firearms were in his truck and that he had become confused while driving near the border.”

Despite having absolutely no evidence that Tahmooressi was trying to “sneak” across the border, Mexican police arrested and jailed him.

A veteran of two combat tours in Afghanistan, he spent the next 32 weeks behind bars.

“While we are thrilled Sgt. Tahmooressi is home, we have to ask why this valiant Marine was abandoned by his commander-in-chief,” Little said. “Marines have a saying: No Man Left Behind. It’s a shame the White House refused to adopt this cry and instead allowed Sgt. Tahmooressi to languish alone for so long.”


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