Lying flat on the ground is how teachers kept students on an elementary school said teacher Pedro Medina, while an armed commando executed four men against the wall of the school on the side of the campus located in the road El Campanario.
The shooting occurred moments before some of the children were participating in physical education in a field that is behind the same wall where the execution took place.
Four of the bullets pierced through the wall of the "block" and barely missed the children, who were lying on the ground after hearing the loud banging sounds of gun fire. After the shooting some of the spent casings were collected by teachers that managed to reach the other end of the court.
"It sounded like the sound of thunder, at which time we threw the kids to the ground and fortunately no one was hurt," said the principal of the school who declined to give his name for security reasons.
Also in the classrooms students lived through the terror. Not knowing what was going on behind the loud sounds of gun fire produced by the high-caliber weapons, their teacher ordered them to stay on the floor where they remained for about 10 minutes.
"Get down! Get on the floor!” Shouted the scared teachers to the terrified students. A young student who heard the gun shots went outside on to the street in time to see several victims that had been slaughtered.
The incident happened shortly after noon, on the streets of Antonio Zuniga and Emilio Uranga, prompting some parents, who had been waiting outside for school to end, to rush the school so they could immediately remove their children from class to protect them elsewhere. "I heard many gun shots, I became very scared and went inside for my daughter, I could not wait any longer," said a woman leaving the school with her 8 year old girl in hand.
Thee elementary School has a total of 780 students and the administrators suspended the rest of the classes for security reasons.
Behind the wall on the other side of the campus the students arriving for evening classes could still see the scene where four young men were shot dead, one with his face cut in half. Also, when relatives of the dead came to the scene of the campus to identify the men, they used the same wall that had been perforated by the bullets.
According to a statement issued by the Attorney of Justice the suspects had used 9mm handguns and AK-47 assault rifles 7.62X39 caliber, known as the "cuernos de chivo."
Witnesses said the "sicarios" (assassins) lined up the victims kneeling against the wall and sprayed them with two bursts of gunfire and then shot them each once in the head (tiro de gracia).
They also noted that shortly before the suspects started shooting, a military patrol made a pass in front of the street without stopping or confronting the sicarios. Three of the bodies were found a few inches from each other and the fourth was at about 15 yards away as he was shot after trying to run away.
Scattered near the victims were hundreds of spent casings that were markeds with yellow cones by crime scene investigators and then collect to send to the Laboratory of Forensic Ballistics.
The young men killed were not officially identified at the scene, but it is estimated that they were men between the ages of 20 and 25 years old, dark skinned.
It is scary when some of these public executions find themselves in some very vulnerable places like schools. The potential of a child getting hurt or killed is very real in Mexico. Ten seconds on the floor while armed commandos are executing people right outside and bullet are flying all over the place is not very long. I bet there is no plan of locking down school as one finds here in the U. S.
The first video below is an example of how things are very wrong in Mexico when it comes to educating parents about what to do when danger comes knocking on the door. There was a shootout with military and police against some very heavily armed hitmen (sicarios) and it happened right in front of the school.
Some parents who lived nearby heard the gun shots and rushed to the school to take their kids out of their classrooms despite warning by authorities, via a PA system, not do so because it was extremely dangerous. Most parents ignored the warning and risked the life of their children to take them out of the school regardless. I could give an opinion on what could authorites had done to prevent this from happening, but our method of operation here in the U.S. is a lot different than it is in Mexico.
Just to give you an idea what happened during this incident in the city of Reynosa is a video of pictures taken during and after the shootout with sicarios. These were the results of what happened while parentes were taking their kids out of their clasrooms and teachers were seen outside the classroom watching to see what is going on.
All that can be said "thank God no child was hurt."