Synopsis by Mark Deming
Eusebio de Haro Espinosa was a young man from Mexico who slipped over the U.S. border into Texas and was desperate for a drink of water when he happened upon the home of Samuel Blackwood. Later the same day, seventy-year-old Blackwood shot and killed Espinosa; some reports say Blackwood and his wife were chasing the young man in their car when he was killed, while Blackwood's friends and family insist the death was the result of an accident. When Blackwood's case came to trial, it was discovered that part of his initial indictment paperwork had gone missing -- including a key passage concerning weapons -- and eventually the elderly man was released with a suspended sentence, while Espinosa's family insist racism is to blame for their son's death and the failure to bring Blackwood to justice. Filmmakers John Sheedy, David Eckenrode and John Eckenrode examine the Eusebio de Haro Espinosa case in El Inmigrante, a documentary which focuses on the realities of illegal immigration in America -- overworked border guards who feel more compassion than anger towards their charges, amateur vigilantes who discuss their fears of who may be coming into America, and Espinosa's family in Mexico who talk about the young man's death and what prompted him to leave his home. El Inmigrante was screened as part of the 2006 New York Latino Film Festival.