The Dark

I took these photos starting in 2014 as part of an ongoing project about the factors that push Central Americans to flee their countries. I found extreme violence, government absence, corruption, climate change and poverty. I learned that people leave for one reason, or all the reasons at once.

This story was featured in The New York Times.

Relatives and friends of Sgt. Pablo Cándido Vega at the cemetery in Panchimalco, El Salvador, in April 2015.

A police officer guards the Guatemalan Parliament during a protest against government corruption in Guatemala City, September 2017

The funeral of Sgt. Pablo Cándido Vega in Panchimalco, El Salvador, April 2015.

A protest against government corruption in Guatemala City, September 2017.

Central American migrants cross the Suchiate River between Guatemala and Mexico, October 2018.

A U.S. Customs and Border Protection agent shines a light on Honduran migrants who were trying to cross the border from Mexico in November 2018

Cutting sugarcane in Aguilares, El Salvador, March 2015.

El Faraon, a member of the 18th Street gang, after being shot by another gang member. He died in a hospital eight hours later. La Paz, El Salvador, September 2014.

Central American migrants in a truck on its way to Tecún Umán, Guatemala, which borders the Mexican state of Chiapas, in October 2018.

A Honduran child plays near train tracks in Arriaga, Chiapas, in southern Mexico, October 2018.

Alan García reveals a bullet scar on his back in July 2017. He was shot by the military during a protest against a hydroelectric project in Rió Blanco, Intibuca, Honduras, in 2013.

Demonstrators make gasoline bombs while protesting the re-election of President Juan Orlando Hernández in Tegucigalpa, Honduras, December 2017.

Central American migrants in Oaxaca, México, on a trailer heading to the United States, October 2018.

Members of the migrant caravan in a shelter in Juchitan, Oaxaca, Mexico, October 2018

A river in San José, La Paz, Honduras, was diverted to a hydroelectric plant, leaving the surrounding communities without water.

Nicole Cruz and David García look to the American side of the border with their 2-year-old son, Mateo, in Tijuana, Mexico, in November 2018. They fled Honduras because of threats from the 18th Street gang.