45 murder victims in Juarez in March; 1,025 in Mexico…reports from El Diario and Milenio

El Diario reports that 45 people were victims of homicide in March.  This is the highest number in the past 5 months. Two of these victims were women, 2 were minors and 2 were Federal policemen shot in an ambush on March 19.  The report says that another body was discovered in a clandestine grave in the Valle de Juarez and this case is being investigated by the special prosecutor for crimes against women, but this one is not included in the count–apparently because it cannot be said for certain when she was murdered. In all since the beginning of the year, 97 people have been victims of homicide. In January, there were 26 murders, the majority related to gang fights and not “organized crime.” In February, the state Fiscalia reported 26 murders, and in addition, the discovery of 3 bodies in hidden graves and one decapitated person. I would count this as a total of 30, since it is unlikely these other dead will show up in another tally.

The problem of how the deaths are classified by the different government agencies is illustrated in the other article  from MILENIO. This national report says that there were 1,025 murders “related to organized crime” in March–an increase from January and February.  There are no criteria provided as to how these murders are classified as “organized crime related” as opposed to other homicides.  The article reports that the state of Chihuahua is still at the top of the list for murders with 186 homicides. [The article doesn’t give a figure for the city of Juarez, but if we take the number from the Fiscalia of 45, that would mean there were 141 homicides elsewhere in Chihuahua state in March]. The other most violent states are: Sinaloa with 108 homicides in March; Estado de Mexico — 86; Guerrero — 68.

It is worth noting that the article does not report anything for Tamualipas–a state where numerous very violent incidents were reported during March, but no official tallies of the number of victims seems to exist. The Milenio article does not give a source for its data.

At least 11 people murdered in Juarez since Saturday night…

A lot of people have been killed in Juarez during Saturday and Sunday… Follows are the stories I’ve found more or less in reverse chronological order.  The first story in the list reports that an armed group executed 3 men in the Granjas de Chapultepec neighborhood. Two men were killed immediately in the drive-by shooting. Another man was injured and died later.  Witnessed report that it took 40 minutes for ambulances to arrive. This multiple homicide occurred at about 6 pm.

Earlier today, the body of a woman was found inside a house in the colonia Toribio Ortega. She had been raped and beaten to death.  I think the next incident took place late Saturday night, but the fiscalia reported it today. Two men died in a shooting at the Pool Bar Bachacas and 5 more people were injured.
Also on Saturday night, a doctor was murdered in a pharmacy, reportedly for not paying extortion fees. Also, a bus driver was shot and died later at a clinic.
And in another incident late Saturday night, a couple were murdered in their house in Rinconada de las Torres.  The house was also robbed. The killers apparently locked the couple’s children (aged 8 years and 3 months) in a separate room while they removed valuables from the house. Since the house was located in a gated neighborhood, the thieves forced the woman to accompany them on various trips to and from the house as they removed items so that they could pass the guards without being questioned. When they finished taking the belongings from the house, they returned and murdered both adults. In the morning, a neighbor heard the children crying and when he went to investigate he found the parents murdered.  Also, a man who worked as a watchman at a hotel in La Playa neighborhood was found dead this morning, his body hidden behind a stairwell.
I am not sure that I have found all of the reports in the press, but it looks like there have been at least 11 people killed between Saturday night and Sunday evening, so far.  molly