Ryan Lovelace in National Review

Ronnie Osburn was preparing to talk to National Review Online Thursday about lawlessness in his border community when his home was broken into.

Osburn, a rancher who lives just south of a Border Patrol checkpoint in Brooks County, Texas, says he stepped away for about 45 minutes, and when he returned somebody had trashed his house. The trespassers shattered his gun case, leaving a trail of blood throughout the house, but dropped the guns near the kitchen before scattering out the back door. They had searched through the house, opened drawers, and even left a heap of uncooked bacon in a frying pan on the stove.

Ranchers in South Texas say they are seeing a greater criminal element among illegal immigrants trespassing through their property. U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers responded to the situation. Although no arrests have been made, a Brooks County sheriff’s deputy tells National Review Online the break-in involved “undocumented crossers.” At one point a Border Patrol agent said he thought the trespassers had been spotted about a half-mile north of the ranch, headed in the same direction as the Border Patrol checkpoint near Falfurrias.

Border Patrol agents carrying AR-15s and 12-gauge pumps searched the property with Osburn, who also had an AR-15, looking for any sign of the trespassers. After scanning his backyard, Osburn discovered three shoes left behind, and Border Patrol agents said they expected the burglars were less than a mile away.

“Welcome to South Texas,” Osburn tells me while extending his hand.

“This is not the first time this has happened,” he says. “I have Border Patrol in here every day chasing groups, just about.”