US: DEA agent killed in Colombia robbery attempt

June 21, 2013 - 3:34 PM
Colombia DEA Agent Killed

Colombia's President Juan Manuel Santos' live image covers a screen behind female police attending their promotion ceremony in Bogota, Colombia, Friday, June 21, 2013. Santos said he regrets the death of Special Agent James "Terry" Watson, who was assigned to the DEA office in Cartagena. Watson died in an apparent robbery attempt in Colombia, U.S. Ambassador to Colombia Michael McKinley said Friday. Colombian authorities said the American agent was stabbed four times in Bogota. (AP Photo/Fernando Vergara)

BOGOTA, Colombia (AP) — A DEA agent has died in an apparent robbery attempt in Colombia, U.S. Ambassador Michael McKinley said Friday. Colombian authorities said the American agent was stabbed four times.

McKinley told local Radio Caracol that the robbery attempt occurred after the anti-drug agent left a meeting with friends at a Bogota restaurant and got into a taxi.

The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration said in a statement from Washington that Special Agent James "Terry" Watson was assigned to the DEA office in Cartagena, Colombia, but was on temporary assignment in Bogota.

Gen. Jose Roberto Leon, director of Colombia's National Police, said Watson was 43. He had worked in the country for about a year and a half.

Colombian authorities did not say where Watson was from in the United States.

Col. Camilo Cabana of the National Police said that the taxi Watson was riding in was intercepted by another cab about three blocks from the restaurant. Two men got out and tried to pull the American out of the vehicle, stabbing him three times in the chest and once in the leg, Cabana said.

The assailants abandoned the agent in the street, where he was found shortly afterward by a police patrol. Watson was taken to a clinic several blocks away, but had already died.

Police were reviewing area security cameras in hopes of identifying the assailants. The police department has offered a reward of 50 million pesos ($25,800) for information leading to the arrest of those responsible.