Number of unaccompanied minors in fed custody hits 15,500

The U.S. government on Saturday was housing approximately 15,500 unaccompanied migrant minors, including 5,000 teenagers and children stranded in Border Patrol facilities not designed for long-term custody, according to government data reviewed by CBS News.

As of Saturday morning, more than 5,000 unaccompanied minors were being held in a Customs and Border Protection (CBP) tent holding facility in south Texas and other stations along the border with Mexico. According to the government records, unaccompanied children are spending an average of 136 hours in CBP custody, well beyond the 72-hour limit outlined in U.S. law.

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) was also housing nearly 10,500 unaccompanied children in emergency housing facilities and shelters licensed by states to care for minors, department spokesperson Mark Weber told CBS News on Saturday.