One police officer is killed each day in Mexico

So far this year, at least 326 police officers have been murdered in Mexico

One police officer is killed each day in Mexico
English 20/11/2018 19:11 Newsroom Mexico City Miriam Rodríguez & Manuel Espino Actualizada 19:16

During the year, at least 326 police officers have been murdered in 26 states of Mexico, including members of the municipal, state, and federal police. The state of Guanajuato came at the top of the list with a total of 60 executions, followed by Guerrero (32), the State of Mexico (30), Puebla (27), and Veracruz (22).

Mexico City (15), Jalisco (13), and San Luis Potosí (10) are also among the 10 most dangerous states in the country.

According to the National Security Commission (CNS), direct attacks are the main cause of death among officers in the line of duty. While there have been less confrontations recently, aggressions perpetrated by organized crime groups and common delinquents against agents have shown an increase with regard to 2017.

María Elena Morera, chairwoman of Causa en Común (Common cause), indicates that some of the factors leading to this type of crime against police officers are retribution and human error during their service and operations.

In June, the CNS announced a homage to honor police officers who were killed, however, it is still at the planning stage. According to information requested from state governments, there are very specific municipalities in which most murders are focused: There have been 15 murders in the Amatlán de los Reyes municipality in the state of Veracruz and 12 murders in the Salamanca municipality of Guanajuato during the same period.

Other municipalities that have shown high murder rates are Manzanillo, Colima, with seven cases, as well as Culiacán (Sinaloa), Tijuana (Baja California), and Guaymas (Sonora), with six cases each. While in Acapulco, Guerrero, which is considered to be the third most violent city in the world, according to the Citizen Council for Public Security and Criminal Justice, there were five.

On the other hand, no murders against police officers were registered in Aguascalientes, Campeche, Durango, Querétaro, Tlaxcala, nor Yucatán.

With respect to the military, between the months of January and September, there were also deaths during the Mexican government’s campaign against drug trafficking. Nine elements died from agression by firearm in the states of Guerrero, Tamaulipas, and Sinaloa.

Impunity sparks murder

Impunity in Mexico’s criminal justice system, as well as legal vacuums, often cause delinquents to walk free whenever they are not captured at the moment of their crime. Criminals are well aware that the authorities’ capability to investigate is minimal and it is highly unlikely for them to be captured and prosecuted, according to Guillermo Zepeda Lecuona, an investigator from the College of Jalisco.

The specialist pointed out the case of the United States: If a citizen should murder a police officer of any rank, the case is handled as a federal offense and he or she is immediately investigated by the FBI, which causes delinquents to avoid hurting police officers, since they know that the likelihood for them to get caught is too high.

“A while ago, criminals feared that the state could prioritize these investigations and police officers would organize to find those responsible. However, there is a rising expectancy of impunity, since less and less criminals are captured each year,” he said.

The specialist believes that, regarding security and law enforcement, government bodies should give certainty and confidence to their elements by providing proper equipment for them to feel safe. In most cases, criminals in Mexico have better weapons than police officers.
 

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