Border Patrol Inspector Anthony L. Oneto

Border Patrol Inspector Anthony L. Oneto

United States Department of Justice - Immigration and Naturalization Service - United States Border Patrol, U.S. Government

End of Watch Tuesday, March 11, 1947

Anthony L. Oneto

Inspector Anthony Oneto was shot and killed after he and his partner arrested four illegal aliens and the man smuggling them through Indio, California. The two inspectors had placed the four aliens in the back seat of their vehicle and instructed the smuggler to drive his own car to the Border Patrol office.

During the drive the suspect stopped his vehicle and walked back to Inspector Oneto's vehicle, which was following the suspect. The man said something to the inspectors and then produced a .32 caliber handgun and opened fire. Inspector Oneto was killed. Despite being wounded, his partner was able to return fire and wound the suspect. The partner also managed to keep custody of the four illegal aliens until assistance arrived.

The suspect was convicted of first degree and executed in the gas chamber October 10, 1948.

Inspector Oneto had served with the agency for six and half years and was a U.S. Coast Guard veteran of World War II and recipient of the Silver Star. He was survived by his mother and son. A room at the National Border Patrol Museum in El Paso, Texas was named in his honor and displays pictures and possessions of Inspector Oneto, including his Sliver Star.


  • Age 30
  • Tour 6 years, 6 months
  • Badge Not available
  • Military Veteran

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Location California
  • Weapon Handgun; .32 caliber
  • Offender Executed in 1948

Most Recent Reflection

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My sincere condolences to those who have written here about their loved ones they have lost in service to our country.

I would like to express my appreciation to the people who have left a reflection on Inspector Anthony L. Oneto. I will be informing my sister about this site. My sister was born two days after her father, Anthony L. Oneto, was killed. I know she, as well as my mother and brother, Anthony L. Oneto's son, Richard, both who have since passed away, and his friends, would appreciate knowing that his service to our country is continuing to be remembered. My mother told me what a fine man Anthony L. Oneto was; he was a gifted artist as well, and I wish could have known him. I am so glad that my mother and brother lived to see the room named in his honor at the Border Patrol Museum in El Paso, Texas.

Karen Anderson
Daughter of Helen M. Oneto Anderson, wife of Anthony L. Oneto

March 11, 2012

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