03/18 - Suicide won’t stop mission of U.S. immigration bureau - East Valley Tribune: News

03/18 - Suicide won’t stop mission of U.S. immigration bureau

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Posted: Thursday, March 18, 2004 10:02 am | Updated: 4:47 pm, Thu Oct 6, 2011.

The bizarre suicide Tuesday of the director of federal immigration operations in the Valley will not affectoperations to curb the flow of illegal immigrants, an official said Wednesday.

"The agency is going to do the same work day after day," said Russell L. Ahr, spokesman for the federal Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, of which Thomas V. DeRouchey was the interim special agent-in-charge.

DeRouchey, 45, shot himself in the head Tuesday morning while driving south on Interstate 10 to a Tucson news conference, said Marana police, who are investigating the death.

Stepping into the lead position of Valley ICE operations will be Kyle Barnette, associate special agent-in-charge.

Ahr said DeRouchey, known for a strong work ethic as well as his regard for privacy, did not leave a suicide note.

"I knew him to be a very reserved person and I didn’t have much of a chance to learn much about him as a person," Ahr said. "All I can do is speculate."

DeRouchey lived alone in an apartment at the Phoenix Golf Club. He was not married, had no children and both of his parents are dead.

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