Exclusive interview with murdered border agent's attorney reveals family's disgust with government

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by Sybil Hoffman

azfamily.com

Posted on June 28, 2012 at 9:45 PM

Updated Wednesday, Oct 30 at 6:22 AM

PHOENIX -- He's taking on the federal government on behalf of a family now embroiled in a presidential election year political scandal.

When attorney Pat McGroder agreed to represent Kent and Josie Terry following the death of their son, Brian, he never dreamed the case would escalate from wrongful death to speculated government cover-up.

"It certainly has burgeoned into a series of fronts, political included, that I never would have imagined," McGroder said.

On Dec. 14, 2010, U.S. Border Patrol agent Brian Terry was murdered during a gun battle with suspected illegal immigrants in Southern Arizona. After the tragedy, investigators revealed two guns found at the shooting scene were part of an ATF gun-walking operation known as Fast and Furious. The operation allowed hundreds of weapons to fall into the hands of violent Mexican criminals.

When asked if Terry was betrayed by his country, McGroder replied, "Well, I don't know if I would use the word betrayed. I think, however, he was victimized by an operation that was flawed."

The scandal has rattled the highest offices in our federal government beginning with an Arizona ATF turned whistle blower. Then came congressional hearings focusing on Attorney General Eric Holder. And just last week, an executive order from the president, banning the release of key documents many suspect outline what happened that December night.

The Terrys are taken aback watching everything unfold.

"I think their disgust is born out of 18 months of frustration as to what they see as an inability for people to be transparent," McGroder explained.

McGroder said the Terrys feel their son is now being used as a political football.

"The wound is continually opened whether it be in the midst of these political wars that we're seeing now in Washington," he said.

Earlier this year, the Terrys filed a $25 million wrongful death lawsuit against the federal government.

"I don't know if there is ever an amount or enough of an amount of money to compensate people for the enormity of the loss of a loved one," McGroder said.

In the meantime, Brian's parents are left watching the political posturing and wonder if they'll ever get answers.

"Is there something hard about a governmental official coming forward and indicating exactly what happened, taking responsibility for what happened, good and bad, and reaching out to the Terry family? McGroder asked. "Those are three very simple things and for whatever reason have not and are not occurring."

Read the Terry family lawsuit  

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