It is never good when innocent people, especially children get caught in the cross fire of the drug war being waged in Ciudad Juarez. It is heart breaking to hear of such tragedy and it's such a sensless act of violence when a child who is truly innocent is killed. We have seen sicarios (hitmen) kill family members of intended targets, including children and women. They do this to send a message to others and to emposed brutal punishment to the intended target. It is a ruthless business on the other side of the border.
A 7-year-old Glen Cove Elementary School third-grader was attempting to run away from gunmen when he was shot several times in the back, Juárez police say.
The same gunmen had just shot and killed his father.
The boy, Raul Xazziel Ramirez-Ramirez, is the youngest student from an El Paso school to die in the savage and unrelenting war among rival drug cartels in Juárez. The death toll this year has already reached a little more than 2,200.
Raul was reportedly visiting his father in Juárez when he was gunned down.
Raul lived with his aunt and uncle in El Paso and this was his first semester at Glen Cove Elementary in East El Paso. Counseling was offered to students and teachers at the school.
The fatal shootings happened at Bernardo Norzagaray and Arroyo de las Víbores streets just before 7:55 p.m. Friday.
Mexican detectives first discovered the boy's father, Raul Ramirez Alvarado, 35, Chihuahua state police said.
Alvarado, who received multiple gunshot wounds to the side of his body and his face, was sitting in the driver's seat of a white 2002 Suzuki. Alvarado's son's body was then located on the pavement near the vehicle, police said.
The younger Raul escaped from the vehicle, but was apparently shot several times in the back. The boy's body fell forward in front of the vehicle.
Police believe the boy witnessed his father's shooting death and attempted to run away.
No arrests have been made. Eighteen casings from a 9 mm weapon were found at the scene.
Raul's classmates were spared the details of his death, but the school was nonetheless shocked at the boy's passing. Grievance counselors were made available for both students and teachers.
Raul and his father were among at least 22 killed in the area since Friday. Most victims were shot ambush- or execution-style in their vehicles or along streets. Raul is the youngest student from an El Paso school to die in the savage and unrelenting war among rival drug cartels in Juárez. The death toll this year has already reached a little more than 2,200.
In the town of Guadalupe Distritos Bravo, across the border from Fabens, a gunman killed three baseball players at a baseball park, Chihuahua state police said.
José Rodriguez and two unidentified men, who were between 30 and 35 years old, were fatally shot in front of a crowd of spectators, officials said. No other injuries were reported.
The war currently raging between the Sinaloa and Juarez Cartels has resulted in more than 4,000 murders in Juarez in less than two years.
Despite the presence of 5,000 Mexican troops now patrolling the city, the cartels are killing people at the rate of more than 200 per month.
The situation has become so hopeless that the Juarez business community is asking the United Nations to set up peacekeeping operations in the city.
A bloody turf war between warring drug cartels that started last year has made the city one of the most violent in the world.
According to statistics from local prosecutors, Ciudad Juarez records about 10 murders a day. The bloodiest month this year has been September, with 476 killings reported.
The violence has not spilled over significantly across the border to El Paso, but as Friday's shooting showed, the pain of one of the sister cities is shared by the other.
Raul was not the youngest victim slain this year. In early 2009, a 3-year-old girl was killed together with her father inside a vehicle that was targeted