Synopsis by Nathan Southern
Mercedes Maharis helms the documentary Cochise County USA: Cries from the Border, an official selection at the politically conservative The Liberty Film Festival. Set in Cochise County, in the southeastern corner of Arizona, Maharis's film provides a scathing, no-holds-barred expose of the effect of illegal Mexican immigration on a southwestern American town. The picture opens with a testimony by Cochise County sheriff Larry Dever, as he discusses the depth and aftereffects of this problem, and the film then segues into area resident Chris Simcox, who formed the Civil Homeland Defense in Tombstone, Arizona in order to address this issue. Also appearing are Jennifer Allen, Border Action Network Director, who discusses the effects of environmental damage on the Sonoran Desert, a resident who expresses concerns about illegal immigration yielding heightened terrorism at Fort Huachucha, and a number of humanitarian groups who demonstrate how they are attempting to solve the problem of deaths in the desert as a product of illegal crossings.