The mother of a South Florida marine being held in a Mexican jail on weapons charges was headed to Mexico Tuesday to attend a hearing, where her son is expected to tell a judge his side of the story.
Jill Tahmooressi was flying to Tijuana Tuesday morning to attend the Wednesday hearing for son Andrew Tahmooressi, who is expected to give a statement to a judge to explain his arrest.
"I hope that the judge will consider it and discern the truth and release Andrew," Tahmooressi told reporters at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport. "He's been just frighteningly abandoned for all these months and to have family present is definitely reassuring."
Andrew Tahmooressi, 25, was arrested April 1 after driving his black Ford pickup over the border at San Ysidro, California, into Tijuana. Family members said Tahmooressi, who was in possession of three U.S.-registered firearms, got lost near the border after dark and took a wrong turn into Mexico.
The Marine reservist, who is from Weston and has served two tours of duty in Afghanistan, was in the San Diego area to receive treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder.
"He's holding out as best as he can but I will say his PTSD...has been exacerbated by this imprisonment, so he desperately needs to get back to America and continue on to his course of treatment, he is a current Marine," his mother said.
Jill Tahmooressi said she hopes the charges will be dropped at Wednesday's hearing.
"I'm hoping I don't take the flight Thursday night, I'm hoping I take it Wednesday night with Andrew. So I'm hoping that the judge will just dismiss the charges for what it is, an accidental entry, no intention to be on Mexico soil with his U.S. legally purchased firearms," she said. "If I come back alone on Thursday, my flight, it's gonna be devastating."
Tahmooressi has gained the support of Florida elected officials, including Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz and Sen. Marco Rubio. His family has also started a White House petition asking for his release.
"I'm hoping for the best but planning for the worst," Jill Tahmooressi said.