Reporting on the Mexican Cartel Drug War

Activist "Rubi's Mom" killed in Chihuahua City

Sunday, December 19, 2010 |

By Daniel Borunda
El Paso Times

A mother on a quest to find her daughter's killer was fatally shot last Thursday night in front of the state capitol in Chihuahua City.

Better known simply as "Rubi's mom," Maricela Escobedo was an activist and self-made investigator seeking to bring to justice the person who killed her daughter, Rubi Marisol Freyre Escobedo, in Juarez in 2008.

State prosecutor Jorge Gonzalez Nicolas late Thursday confirmed the homicide of Escobedo, who was shot while collecting signatures in front of the state capitol.

A closed-circuit camera captured the 20 seconds or so at 8:10 p.m. when a man got out of a white Volkswagen Jetta and approached Escobedo in the square. Frightened by him, Escobedo ran across the street, dodging busy traffic, the assailant only footsteps behind her. He shot her with a 9mm pistol in the head at the entrance to the governor's palace.

The video shows the killer running back across the street and getting in the waiting car, which pulled away.

The brazen hit of a grieving mother — in the capital of a state renowned for hundreds of murders of women and girls — sparked condemnation from within Mexico and from abroad.

Escobedo had been on a quest to bring her daughter's killer to justice after a state tribunal cleared a man arrested in Rubi Freyre's death.

"She had given us important information she had found herself about the tragic death of her daughter," Gonzalez said. "She provided important information to prosecutors and federal police from the investigations she was doing and that were being supported by prosecutors."

Woman activist slain in Chihuahua: Quest to find daughter's killer drove self-made investigator

by Daniel Borunda
El Paso Times
Marisela Escobedo Ortiz wore makeup depicting tears during one of her protests. She is holding a wanted poster for the man suspected in killing her daughter.

A mother on a quest to find her daughter's killer was fatally shot Thursday night in front of the state capitol in Chihuahua City.

Better known simply as "Rubi's mom," Marisela Escobedo was an activist and self-made investigator seeking to bring to justice the person who killed her daughter, Rubi Marisol Freyre Escobedo, in Juárez in 2008.

State prosecutor Jorge Gonzalez Nicolas late Thursday confirmed the slaying of Escobedo, who was shot while collecting signatures in front of the state capitol.

Gonzalez said security cameras filmed the attack and there were also four witnesses. Gonzalez said Escobedo exchanged words with a man, who then pulled out a handgun. She was shot in the head while trying to run to safety.

A video of the shooting shows a man getting out of a white car and then approaching Escobedo. It shows the woman running for her life, and when the man shoots her, she falls on a sidewalk. The shooter then climbs into the white car and leaves.

The prosecutor said investigators were following several leads and had several clues, including a 9mm bullet casing found next to a cigarette butt the shooter had in his mouth moments earlier.

Escobedo had been trying to bring her daughter's killer to justice after a state tribunal cleared a man arrested in Rubi Freyre's death.

"She had given us important information she had found herself about the tragic death of her daughter," Gonzalez said. "She provided important information to prosecutors and federal police from the investigations she was doing and that were being supported by prosecutors."
Chihuahua human-rights officials told television reporters Friday that they were going to look into the shooting death of Marisela Escobedo.

Wednesday march in Juárez to honor slain activist

Activists calling for justice in the murder of Marisela Escobedo Ortiz will conduct a march Wednesday in Juárez.
A group led by veteran activist Judith Galarza announced the event and invited the public to participate.

Escobedo's public murder in front of the governor's palace in Chihuahua City made headlines around the world and elicited the condemnation of Amnesty International and the United Nations.

She was protesting the release by Chihuahua state judges of a suspect in her daughter's 2008 slaying in Juárez when a man wielding a gun shot her at close range on Thursday. Her murder was caught on camera.

Other mothers and relatives of young women who were murdered in Juárez reported being threatened, harassed and assaulted, but Escobedo is the first to be assassinated.
The two days after Escobedo's death, her common-law husband's business in Juárez was burned intentionally and her brother-in-law was abducted.

Chihuahua state officials said today that they are continuing to investigate.

In an unusual move, Chihuahua Gov. Cesar Duarte requested the suspension of the three state judges that set free the man who allegedly killed Escobedo's daughter.

Last week, the U.S. State Department announced a $50,000 grant for Nuestras Hijas de Regreso a Casa, a nonprofit group in Juárez that advocates to end violence against women and children.

The money for the grant is from the federal government's budget for foreign assistance.

Marisela Ortiz, co-founder of the internationally renowned group, also condemned Escobedo's killing. Ortiz and her associates also have reported threats against them.
More than 1,000 girls and women were murdered in Juárez over the past 17 years, according to officials.

Also last week, Mexican officials announced that a parcel at Ejercito Nacional and Paseo de la Victoria, near the U.S. consulate, will serve as the site for a monument to honor the memory of slain women in Juárez.

The bodies of eight young women were found in a cotton field at that site in November 2001.

The InterAmerican Court of Human Rights (Organization of American States) had ordered the Mexican government to reinvestigate the 2001 "cotton field" murders, compensate the three three victims who petitioned the court, and build a memorial for the victims.

Mexican activist laid to rest as boyfriend's lumber yard goes up in flames

Family and friends gathered to celebrate the life of activist Marisela Escobedo.

A lumber yard belonging to the boyfriend of murdered activist Marisela Escobedo went up in flames early Saturday morning. Suspects started the fire and fled, officials said.

The incident occurred on the same day as Escobedo's funeral.

Firefighters stand outside "Maderera y Materiales Monje," a lumber yard in Mexico belonging to Escobedo's boyfriend, as flames tear through the interior of the business.

Authorities also reported that the body of the brother-in-law of Maridela Escobedo was found executed with his face covered with plastic bags and his feet and hands were tied with indutrial grey tape. It was reported that an armed commando had abducted Manuel Monge Amparan after they set the fire.

Escobedo, who is known in Chihuahua City as "Rubi's mom," was murdered Thursday outside of the state capitol in Chihuahua City while trying to collect signatures.

After her daughter, Rubi Freyre, was murdered in Juarez in 2008 and officials cleared the suspect arrested in the case, Escobedo took on the role of investigator and activist.



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24 Borderland Beat Comments:

ajulio said...

i was talking about this incident this morning with some friends. what a tragedy. rest in peace marisela. right now, i am very sad but i know that you are now in heaven with your daughter. no more pain......

Anonymous said...

SHES A HERO LIKE DON ALEJO- A MARTYR!! GOD BLESS HER SOUL AND MAY SHE BE REUNITED WITH HER DAUGHTER FOR ALL ETERNITY!!!
VIVA MARICELA!!!

HUNT DOWN THE FILTY DOG WHO DID THIS AND SEND HIM TO SATAN TO ROAST FOR EVER IN PAIN!!!!

Anonymous said...

I don't know how much more it will take before the citizens in this city fight back. Get neighbor hood watch programs police or army you can trust to do something and act out. IF Calderon cannot protect women and children he should step down. This lady is a true hero and this just not suppose to happen anywhere.

Anonymous said...

http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/chronicle/7344999.html

http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/metropolitan/7347027.html

BB I think Don Alejo left some big shoes to fill but check these out here in Houston.

jc

Anonymous said...

Very sad. Hope the scum who did this to her daughter and her gets his. Being a Zeta then i'm sure he just made a target of himself for the Sinaloa or Gulf Cartel who we all know hate the Zeta's and hate guys who kill young girls and women.

Anonymous said...

Buela was crying about this the other day haha....What in the world does this have to do with "Reporting on the Mexican Cartel Drug War????" If we want to talk about ordinary crime that happens in Mexico or other political issues, then I think Borderland Beat should take down that lil banner that says "Reporting on the Mexican Cartel Drug War" cuz even tho sad and heartbreaking it has nothing to do with the Drug War. I rest my case.

Anonymous said...

@December 19, 2010 10:29 PM
Its not Calderon fault buddy, maybe go back and study just a lil about how the Judicial system in Mexico and you will see that this was done at the State level of Chihuahua, a state, wow imagine that...Mexico has states too haha....and while your at it...I ask you this wow you blame Obama for killing of an activist who was murdered in your city? The answer is no...why bz that corresponds to the local level, the city..food for thought

@December 20, 2010 2:33 AM
This wasnt done by no freakin Zeta...just a low life thug..Sergio Barraza who didnt like the attention it was bringing him.

Anonymous said...

@JC
Good Story but Don Alejo killed much more and the Zetas were better armed this this thugs...not trying to take credit away...he gets all my respect but Don Alejo knew he was going to die that day, and that my friend is what makes that story so unique...instead of running away he fought back, and died fighting.

Anonymous said...

"Anonymous said...
Buela was crying about this the other day haha....What in the world does this have to do with "Reporting on the Mexican Cartel Drug War????""

Have you even bother to read the articles?????
It has organized crime written all over it!
There is a Zeta and Le Linea connection if you are smart enough to figure it out, I know most BB readers did!

Bill said...

TRUE EFFECTS OF THIS WAR ON DRUGS

Dear friends,

I am trying to raise awareness about what is going on here in Ciudad Juarez. I work as a professor at Universidad Autonoma de Chihuahua in Juarez, and I have met many persons affected by this sad situation. Less than a week ago, a mother got shot while demanding justice for her murdered daughter.

If it serves your interests please share the links below; if not, please excuse my nerve and kindly disregard this message.

The inhabitants of Ciudad Juarez repudiate the violence that has plagued our city for the past 30 months.
Men and women of good; we have seen friends and relatives succumb to the bullets, we have seen our neighbors closing down their businesses and losing their means of living. We are afraid to drive through our streets. We feel constant fear, now we distrust each other.

We cannot resort to the authorities, throughout this time we have been victims of their greed and abuse. Our leaders are indifferent and incompetent. They only simulate a void interest and do little to remedy the situation. With empty words they present, as an official version, a picture outside our everyday reality, while making every effort to hide the shameful events that repeat day after day in this border town.

Our only recourse is to raise our voice to the international community. To submit our testimony and show to the world the extermination acts of which we are victims today.
We want men and women from all countries to know what is really happening in Ciudad Juarez.


I have spoken before students and professors; If you are interested, I can offer a presentation.

Thank you for reading. Feel free to contact me should you have any questions.


Guillermo Cervantes, Ph. D.
zxxvii@gmail.com

Feel free to print or publish any information from these links:


Ciudad Juárez, México. 2008-2010,

A photographic testimony of our pain: http://www.ciudadjuarez2008-2010.com

Un testimonio fotográfico de nuestro dolor: http://ciudadjuarez2008-2010esp.blogspot.com/

Anonymous said...

Why blame Calderon and what can Obama do if the same happened easy. In the US we can send in the national guard,State troopers, FBI, CIA etc and this women would of not been killed. The murder would of never gone free in the first place because District attorney would make there name on putting that scumbag away at whatever cost. Calderon has not done enough to clean up the justice system and has not done enough to institute one police force. The hero was only at the capitol building and supposed to be watched after good job security way to take your job seriously.

Matanzas said...

Guillermo, I did look at your work some time ago, it is a realistic and grim picture of CJ. And I see the people's opposition to Calderon's policy, and I can't blame them for that, for it is a failed policy.
Now, don't wait on international intervention but look at your next presidential election, 2012. What do you see for the future?

Alliance GOVT-DTOs against thugs and thieves, social cleansing of the streets by the selected DTOs' sicarios, and let the US and EU deal with their drug problem in their own countries; The Iraqi strategy?

Or a coup d'etat by the military, etat de siege in the country, military tribunals for serious crimes and death penalty immediately applied at sentencing. The Turkish strategy?

Anyway, you need to first restore order and confidence, then reform in depth the social fabric to promote development: good education, fair taxation, justice and law enforcement.

How do you guys plan to go there?

MFG

Anonymous said...

December 20, 2010 10:29 AM

Yes I bothered to read the article, and also I read the ones here in the State of Chihuahua where it happen. Obviously you know nothing about Mexico, when throwing "It has organized crime written all over it! There is a Zeta and Le Linea connection" What a moron seriously. Here's a fact over 90 percent of all crimes committed in Mexico are of Ministerio Público del Fuero Común, which translates basically in other words..to ordinary crime, not organized crime. Wow imagine that you learned something today. This has no Zeta and la linea connection. Just bz someone is shot in the head or killed doesn't mean its organized crime....get your head outta your ass. The local authorities try to say well he/she was shot execution style and drop the case bz they say it corresponds to the federal level...yeah so before you tell me they are "smart enough" to figure it out, maybe you should read some other articles which stated otherwise, I'm not talking about English ones either, el milenio or el norte for example...good day!

Anonymous said...

"This has no Zeta and la linea connection. Just bz someone is shot in the head or killed doesn't mean its organized crime...."

You actually believe that?

Anonymous said...

@December 20, 2010 11:23 AM

"The murder would of never gone free in the first place because District attorney would make there name on putting that scumbag away at whatever cost."

Yeah right, that's why OJ Simpson is out on the streets right and I could name some few other cases but that the most famous haha...And I'm not no fan of Calderon, but if you know anything is that Calderon had sent a congressional bill to institute a one police force, but that out of his hands and in the hands of the congress, not him....he could only do so much...just like your congress approves or deny bills, so too in Mexico, I swear Americans no nothing about Mexico and you guys live right next to US, our neighbors...go to show how ignorant you guys are about the world haha.. good day!

Anonymous said...

@December 20, 2010 2:36 PM
Yes I actually believe that, maybe bz I live down here and got all the facts...maybe you read all the facts before you comment.

Anonymous said...

"Anonymous said...Here's a fact over 90 percent of all crimes committed in Mexico are of Ministerio Público del Fuero Común, which translates basically in other words..to ordinary crime, not organized crime."

Can you post a source of your stats?

Because Milenio, the news source you bragged as reading, just recently said that 75% of all executions in Chihuahua are related to narco trafficking:

"en Chihuahua los datos oficiales señalan que de las 339 ejecuciones en lo que va del año, el 75% están relacionadas con el narcotráfico."

Perhaps you skipped this one?
Oh and I live in Chihuahua and read the news ever day!

''lito 'brito said...

the video is so sad..running for her life and just like that ...dead...and so fast , no dramatic last stand...just trying to get away...this video really affected me...

it really makes me wonder what is going to happen to Mexico...

when even a mother trying to get justice for her dead child is killed by the same hijo de puta...

this incident says failed state to me more than any other thing that has happened....

Mexico is in a downward spiral and there is no way out of it ...

even if all the narcos are killed , it will not fix the overall climate of general lawlessness..it just seeme doomed to get worse

this womans death is a travesty that ALL of Mexico should be extremely ashamed of

Anonymous said...

@''lito 'brito

"Mexico should be extremely ashamed "...Nah it what los chihuahuense should be embarrassed about, it happen in their state, just like juarez. It should be embarrassing for them and they should start cleaning up their house.

Signed el chilango

Anonymous said...

Ok lets try this again, my last comment wasn't posted....I said if you read closely look what I said...I said Mexico, the entire nation not Chihuahua right? And second here is one of my my one of my sources "Perhaps you skipped this one?"

http://impreso.milenio.com/node/8764741

Anonymous said...

Eye for an eye tooth for a tooth, citizens of Mexico and decidents of mexico it is time for a revoulotion against those that bring harm to our familys and friends and innocent people that want a free life of this bullshit epidimic drug war. I am truly embarresed about how they act like savages, with no up bringing to hurt your own people.

Anonymous said...

"Eye for an eye will make the world go blind" -gandhi

Anonymous said...

F**king cowards, are these even human beings that can do this to another human? Maricela was the brave one, rest in peace maybe you are now with your daughter. What is it in the Northern Mex culture that condones this? Corruption, torture, and murder, what a treat, let's all go to Mexico!

ROSE said...

Don't let the bleeding hearts of 'Gandi' followers deceive you. The only alternative in a dire situation, is getting rid of the trash. You hate to call people trash, but unfortunately, it is what it is. That's the problem today with our worlds, we the people vote these politicians to make our governments responsible into making this world a better place. Instead our taxes are use to feed, cloth, and house these people. The governments wants crime to happen so they can use our tax-dollars to spend on these corporations who are making a killing on the prisioners they house. Don't be fooled people, it's a game on how to steal from the people and use our taxes, in the name of good to be corrupt. Almost all governments are corrupt, some worse than others. Too bad. Don't let your compassion blind you with justice. Jesus said, "I change not one jot of the law", the death penalty is true today. People use the word of God and manipulate it to continue the evil in the world. There are 4 hidden dynastys that Statan controls. 1 Education System. 2 Economys of the world. 3 Governments of the world. and last 4 Religions. All these systems keep us in 'bondage to the system'. Interesting enough, one thing this systems all have in common is MAMON, MONEY, DINERO. fIND THE ADVANTAGE TO YOUR OPPONENT, AND USE IT AGAINIST THEM.

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