More border patrol agents are getting assaulted on the job.
A honduran man was sentenced-- a year and a half behind bars-- today for attacking a brownsville agent.
The attack happened near azucena street last november.
When agents tried arresting the man-- he struck an agent on the side of the face.
Channel 5's steven sarabia found out why attacks like this are becoming more common.
The rio grande valley border patrol supervisor says it comes down to desperation.
Smugglers trying to avoid getting caught and those crossing illegally fighting to make sure their journey doesn't come to an end.
Assaults on border patrol agents are up 67% from fiscal year 2016 to 2017.
The numbers -- aren't going unnoticed.
Robert rodriguez - border patrol supervisior rgv sector "that is extremely concerning to us."
Robert rodriguez the border patrol supervisior rgv sector says assaults on agents is one of the biggest threats they face.... robert rodriguez - border patrol supervisior rgv sector "the incidences that we see for the most part are out of desperation where the immigrant or the smuggler is attempting to evade arrest."
He says they tend to use anything they can get their hands on as weapons.
Robert rodriguez - border patrol supervisior rgv sector "we've had instances where summglers have attempted to run over agents."
Even rocks on the ground.
In a channel 5 news special report we interviewed border patrol agent randy de leon.
In 2010 a piece of concrete, about the size of a football, flew towards the agent - hitting the right side of his face.
" i had to get three stitches in my eyeball.
One of the bones that was broken was the ocular bowl, which holds up your eyeball.
It's a plate like this, demonstrates size and they literally shattered it in half.
And my eyeball was sinking and falling back into my head.
And i had two surgeries, reconstructive surgeries on the right side of my face, where they placed four titanium plates in my face to repair the damage."
While the scars have healed... i do carry this with me.
And i don't just mean like the physical aspect, but like what it's done to me.
I don't want this to happen to me again.
I don't want this to happen to any other agent.
Rodriguez says part of the reason for the recent increase in assaults is due to how difficult it's become to cross illegally.
Robert rodriguez - border patrol supervisior rgv sector "with the more pressure thats applied to these smugglers the more desperate they are going to become and they will start utilizing more sever tactics to attempt to get their accomendity or the aliens across."
In fiscal year 2016 403 agents were assaulted, it jumped to 671 fiscal year 2017.
Rodriguez says to help combat these assaults... border patrol agents have back up near by.
Live in the channel five news studio steven sarabia channel five news