El Paso Times
Diario de Juarez
The Texas National Guard today has confirmed that a man murdered in Ciudad Juarez this Wednesday, Jose Gil Hernandez, 22, of El Paso Texas, was an off-duty private first class assigned to the Headquarters Battery 3rd Battalion, 133 Field Artillery.
Gil Hernandez and another man, Rafael Ramirez Reza, 43, were gunned down from a moving vehicle by an unknown group of armed men as they spoke outside of a home in the colonia Revolucion Mexicana in south Juarez. Another man, Manuel Galindo, 19, survived the attack and was hospitalized.
Chihuahua state officials said a crime scene unit investigated the shooting and found 18 empty casings from .45 and .223 caliber weapons.
The Guard prohibits active-duty soldiers from traveling to Mexico, and urges those not on active duty to only cross the border if absolutely necessary. Hernandez was a student when not on duty. The Guard said his death is under investigation by the FBI and the U.S. Army's Criminal Investigation Division.
In El Paso, regular Army soldiers stationed at Fort Bliss are forbidden to cross the border into Mexico. Juárez and all other Mexican cities have been off-limits to them since 2009.
The last U.S. military serviceman to be killed in Juárez was Staff Sgt. David Booher in November 2009. Gunmen shot Booher, an Air Force medic, at the Amadeus strip club along with five other people. Booher was with the 49th Fighter Wing and stationed at Holloman Air Force Base. He was off-duty when he was killed.
More than 6,700 people have been killed in Juárez during the past two years.
In 2010, more than 2,470 have died in gunbattles, carjackings, executions and other forms of violence.