Reporting on the Mexican Cartel Drug War

Mexico town fires young police chief who left post

Monday, March 7, 2011 |

By E. EDUARDO CASTILLO,
Associated Press


A young woman who made international headlines when she accepted the job as police chief in a violent Mexican border town was fired Monday for apparently abandoning her post after receiving death threats.

Marisol Valles Garcia was granted a leave of absence from March 2-7 to travel to the United States for personal matters but failed to return to Praxedis G. Guerrero as agreed, city officials said in a statement.

"In the absence of (Valles Garcia's) presence on the agreed-upon day, and since there was no notification of a need to extend the period of her absence, the mayor has decided to remove her from office," the statement read.

A local official accompanied Valles Garcia last week to the international bridge connecting El Porvenir to Fort Hancock, Texas, said Human Rights Commission official Gustavo de la Rosa Hickerson.

Local news media have since reported that she was seeking asylum in the United States, but there has been no confirmation of that and her precise whereabouts were not clear.

Over the weekend, as speculation increased that she was seeking refuge, officials tried to contact Valles Garcia by cell phone but were unable to reach her.

De la Rosa Hickerson said Monday that he still had not been able to reach her and did not know where she was. He added that he would ask officials to retract their dismissal of the young chief.

"I have the impression that this position by the mayor is a bit hasty," he told The Associated Press in a phone interview. "Because right now Marisol needs support, and one way to be supportive is to leave her in office."

De la Rosa Hickerson said residents of Praxedis told him Valles Garcia had received threats against her life, and there may even have been an attempt to kidnap her.

"To fire her is to leave her completely alone," he said.

Valles Garcia was named police chief of Praxedis G. Guerrero in October at age 20. The town had been without a police chief since her predecessor was shot to death in July 2009.

Drug violence has transformed the township of about 8,500 people from a string of quiet farming communities into a lawless no man's land.

Two rival gangs — the Juarez and Sinaloa drug cartels — are battling over control of its single highway, a lucrative drug-trafficking route along the Texas border.

Police will answer to the mayor until a new chief is appointed, the city government's statement said.

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33 Borderland Beat Comments:

790 said...

she probably didn't want to date the local drug lord.

Anonymous said...

Who wouldn't leave? I'm sure the mayor is being paid off by one side or the other.

Anonymous said...

She was smart to leave. She would only have ended up dead. She did her duty, time for someone else to step up to the plate. I bet there is no big rush to fill her shoes.

Anonymous said...

I'm glad she made it out alive. However, she should have resigned when she left, but then again, maybe taking a "leave" gave her enough time to disappear. I certainly hope she is getting protection in the US from the gangs here associated with the thugs in Mexico. She was so brave to take that job, but now she and her entire family are in grave danger. How very sad. My prayers are with her.

DFL said...

If Marisol had more Mexicans with balls behind her, she would lead them herself ito battle against those asshole cartels.
She has what it takes. She has already proved it.
She should'nt have to stay and fight by herself however she showed that she would.
This girl is a BAD ASS CHICK and she is a patriot and a Hero for her country and people!!
Viva Marisol Valles Garcia!!!Viva Don Alejo!!!
Both are Real Heros!!!

Anonymous said...

For her to slip out like that, obviously she thought it was the only way to get out alive.

Anonymous said...

Deja 18 muertos
balacera en Tamaulipas
EL NORTE / Staff
Un enfrentamiento entre bandas rivales del crimen organizado, registrado esta mañana, deja 18 muertos en Abasolo, Tamaulipas, informan autoridades. (20:51)

Anonymous said...

I am beginning to think this was just a stunt on her part and she knew the endgame all along.

Anonymous said...

So if i piss off a bunch of drug dealers in america, can i get asylum in mexico?
She knew what she was doing all along..... why should she be our problem now? Send her to South America somewhere.

Anonymous said...

Not only her, but 20-30 family members are also seeking asylum in the USA.
How convenient.

Buela said...

The jury is still out with me.
NO ONE can verify one threat including Gustavo de la Rosa. SHe has family in TX.
I am not so sure this was real.

here is a link to NY times article but if you are asked to register just google;
ABSENT POLICE CHIEF IS FIRED IN MEXICO; ENDING AN EXPERIMENT

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/03/08/world/americas/08mexico.html

Anonymous said...

Other countries have offered Mexican Nationals asylum as well, Its not that great living in america either. check the murder rates.they well exceed those in Mexico. European countries are willing to help , as well as many south american countries. some have higher standards of living than in the U.S. believe it or not. she is a human being and deserves Life liberty and the pursuit of happiness. The American founding fathers didn't mention in the constitution, that it was only for a limited time. Gotta act now! did they? the pale faced man came to this continent to impose his history on this great land. 400 years of lies and oppression. these times are a result of that oppression.

Anonymous said...

Anon 9:05am says: "Its not that great living in america either. check the murder rates.they well exceed those in Mexico."
--------------------------
Haha, what? Surely you are smoking some of that cartel product. Crack a book open sometime and learn history instead of spouting propaganda.

Murders per capita sorted by country from most to least. Mexico has 3x the rate of murders that the US has.

# 1 Colombia: 0.617847 per 1,000 people
# 2 South Africa: 0.496008 per 1,000 people
# 3 Jamaica: 0.324196 per 1,000 people
# 4 Venezuela: 0.316138 per 1,000 people
# 5 Russia: 0.201534 per 1,000 people
# 6 Mexico: 0.130213 per 1,000 people
# 7 Estonia: 0.107277 per 1,000 people
# 8 Latvia: 0.10393 per 1,000 people
# 9 Lithuania: 0.102863 per 1,000 people
# 10 Belarus: 0.0983495 per 1,000 people
# 11 Ukraine: 0.094006 per 1,000 people
# 12 Papua New Guinea:0.0838593 per 1,000 people
# 13 Kyrgyzstan: 0.0802565 per 1,000 people
# 14 Thailand: 0.0800798 per 1,000 people
# 15 Moldova: 0.0781145 per 1,000 people
# 16 Zimbabwe: 0.0749938 per 1,000 people
# 17 Seychelles: 0.0739025 per 1,000 people
# 18 Zambia: 0.070769 per 1,000 people
# 19 Costa Rica: 0.061006 per 1,000 people
# 20 Poland: 0.0562789 per 1,000 people
# 21 Georgia: 0.0511011 per 1,000 people
# 22 Uruguay: 0.045082 per 1,000 people
# 23 Bulgaria: 0.0445638 per 1,000 people
# 24 United States: 0.042802 per 1,000 people
# 25 Armenia: 0.0425746 per 1,000 people
# 26 India: 0.0344083 per 1,000 people
# 27 Yemen: 0.0336276 per 1,000 people
# 28 Dominica: 0.0289733 per 1,000 people
# 29 Azerbaijan: 0.0285642 per 1,000 people
# 30 Finland: 0.0283362 per 1,000 people
# 31 Slovakia: 0.0263303 per 1,000 people
# 32 Romania: 0.0250784 per 1,000 people
# 33 Portugal: 0.0233769 per 1,000 people
# 34 Malaysia: 0.0230034 per 1,000 people
# 35 Macedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic of: 0.0229829 per 1,000 people
# 36 Mauritius: 0.021121 per 1,000 people
# 37 Hungary: 0.0204857 per 1,000 people
# 38 Korea, South: 0.0196336 per 1,000 people
# 39 Slovenia: 0.0179015 per 1,000 people
# 40 France: 0.0173272 per 1,000 people
# 41 Czech Republic: 0.0169905 per 1,000 people
# 42 Iceland: 0.0168499 per 1,000 people
# 43 Australia: 0.0150324 per 1,000 people
# 44 Canada: 0.0149063 per 1,000 people
# 45 Chile: 0.014705 per 1,000 people
# 46 United Kingdom: 0.0140633 per 1,000 people
# 47 Italy: 0.0128393 per 1,000 people
# 48 Spain: 0.0122456 per 1,000 people
# 49 Germany: 0.0116461 per 1,000 people
# 50 Tunisia: 0.0112159 per 1,000 people
# 51 Netherlands: 0.0111538 per 1,000 people
# 52 New Zealand: 0.0111524 per 1,000 people
# 53 Denmark: 0.0106775 per 1,000 people
# 54 Norway: 0.0106684 per 1,000 people
# 55 Ireland: 0.00946215 per 1,000 people
# 56 Switzerland: 0.00921351 per 1,000 people
# 57 Indonesia: 0.00910842 per 1,000 people
# 58 Greece: 0.0075928 per 1,000 people
# 59 Hong Kong: 0.00550804 per 1,000 people
# 60 Japan: 0.00499933 per 1,000 people
# 61 Saudi Arabia: 0.00397456 per 1,000 people
# 62 Qatar: 0.00115868 per 1,000 people

Anonymous said...

I seriously doubt she is going to be granted asylum in the United States. Asylum..is granted on the basis of an individual being persecuted due to their political views. Her situation does not qualify her as a candidate for asylum into the United States. So, she's screwed...it's sad..her own government did not offer her protection.

Anonymous said...

@March 8, 2011 9:05 AM

Yea America sucks! That's why the "Mexican Dream" is to move to America...yea, the quality life is so bad in America...that's why hundreds of thousands of illegals from all over Central and South America enter into the U.S. in search of a better life...get real asshole.

Ovemex said...

El Universal. com.mx has just confirmed that Marisol, her husband, son, and HER PARENTS have requested asylum..They are said to be in an ICE detention center in El Paso.

http://www.eluniversal.com.mx/notas/750121.html

Anonymous said...

@ 11:44

HOW IS IT NOT POLITICAL PERSECUTION??? THE CARTEL WAS TRYING TO FORCE HER TO DO THEIR AGENDA!!!

Anonymous said...

@1:37PM

Your confused, Drug Cartels are criminal organizations not political. Think about it, if The United States offered asylum to all Mexican citizens being threatened by the drug cartels, Juarez would be a ghost town! She made the headlines because of her age and gender...she lasted four months before she realized she made a grave error. Brave? or Fool hearted?

Anonymous said...

JUAREZ IS TURNING INTO A GHOST TOWN!!! I DON'T KNOW IF YOU READ OR IF YOU HAVE BEEN THERE LATELY BUT ITS NOT AS PACKED WITH PEOPLE LIKE IT USED TO BE......PEOPLE IN THE THOUSANDS HAVE FLED JUAREZ AND IF YOU WON'T TAKE MY WORD FOR IT HERE IS A SOURCE....

www.thenewamerican.com/.../5710-residents-abando-juarez-by-thousands-as-violence-escalates

Anonymous said...

AND OF COURSE DRUG CARTELS ARE A PART OF POLITICS IN MEXICO....ARE YOU BLIND DEAF OR JUST DUMB???? EVERY CARTEL IN SOME WAY OR SOME FORM AS INFILTRATED SOME ASPECT OF POLITICS AND IN SOME CASES HAVE TAKEN OVER WHOLE REGIONS POLITICALLY!!! OPEN YOUR F***ING EYES!!! @ 2:08

Anonymous said...

I am glad she decided to leave and not return for her safety and that of her child(ren)..the judicial system of Mexico did her a favor by terminating her position in their department..
Bien hecho Marisol.

Anonymous said...

Your numbers are of per 1000 people.Mr. your numbers are worked over to make it seem safer. the US has 310 million people vs. Mexico's 111 million that's 13060 vs Mexico's 13966. so really were making a fuzz over a little over 900 dead... difference so you're somewhat correct. In Mexico they are executing a violent war against cartels. Whats the US's excuse for it being so consistent? even before Mexico was violent. FYI The ATF allowed weapons to slip into Mexico. violence seems to have trickled down from the US. Immigrants flood the US landscape many to work, at jobs that the lowest classes wont take.Sometimes drug dealers. Don't worry they hire american banker to launder the money. Hispanics are described as subhumans, the Jewish people experienced this during Hitlers reign as furor. Hispanic peoples have taken the place of the black slave in america. The Mexicans are a a means by which fear is conducted. and yet they have a direct hand in the food you eat , the homes you live in and sometimes they are even asked to raise your children. dear Mr @March 8, 2011 9:05 AM
I'm not an asshole because I don't think america is the greatest country on earth. Im an American citizen with the right to speak whats on my mind because I live in Mexico and the patriot act can kiss my ass. I learned history from both sides of the border from University professors who where proud rednecks, whose grand pappies where in the Klan and took pictures of couples dancing under a huge tree with niggers hanging dead from their broken necks like decorations... So I know YOUR History. propaganda huh? you wouldn't know it if it made the American people elect a black man. how do you like change? only the misinformed ignorant poor still think there is a chance of success in America. other countries are blossoming. Look at China...new millionaires every day, and they're just buying up struggling american companies. can you say 我可以請您點菜? "HA HA HA America" great Chinese film now THIS is propaganda.

Anonymous said...

The stats are made up, they don't reflect the true violence we live in. Am from South Africa i can tell you that it's safer than most countries i can think of. We hosted the soccer world cup in 2010 without anY serious violence whatsoever. yes we do have those low life scumbags but not likeb the Mexican cartels.People must stop portraying some countries in Africa as we are animals and we are not civilised.

I have been following the mexico war on drugs and can say HELL ON EARTH does existing. Hope and pray that our ALMIGHTY will help mexico and the beautyful people.

Love Afrika....

Anonymous said...

@March 8, 2011, 4:56PM

Open your eyes! Obviously you don't understand English...Drug Cartels are "Criminal Organizations" not political parties. It doesn't matter if the drug cartels have bribed or corrupted the gov't you idiot...the U.S. immigration isn't going to investigate that shit...that's Mexico's problem. The simple fact is she is not being attacked, threatened, due to her political views but rather because she took a law enforcement job and is now being threatened by criminals!!! not by a political regime...

Anonymous said...

@March 8, 201, 8:59PM

I feel sorry for you because your views and opinions are warped and outdated. It's 2011..not the 60's. Does prejudice/racism still exist today...of course it does and it always will but it is not accepted by mainstream society. Any ethnic minority, who says they can't be successful in America is looking for a "handout" and is lazy.

You sound like a young Fidel Castro. China? really...you no nothing about life in China...here is a buzz word for you "oppressed." China is the last major communist regime. I guess your idea of a perfect life is having your food rationed to you, your job assigned to you, being told how many children you are allowed to have, etc...No my friend you don't no shit about China. Oh and BTW...the average chinese citizen (majority) are poor farmers with no chance of getting an education or rising above their station. Everything in China is regulated especially the media.

Yea your entitled to your opinion...because as an American your allowed that right...In China, you would be shot or imprisoned for life for speaking your mind...Think about it "Snapper head!"

Anonymous said...

@March 8, 2011 11:40 PM

You answered our own ?...according to your numbers the U.S. has approximately 3x the population of Mexico. Yet Mexico has had more murders...difference of 900 according to you. I'm not arguing that the U.S. is not a violent place (it can be) with 3x the population mass you would think the murder rate in the U.S. would blow Mexico's murder rate away...but it doesn't. But we can play the numbers game all day long...in my opinion...the murder rate numbers in Mexico (due to the drug war) can not be accurately measured/counted because of the untold amount of the bodies that have'nt even been found or reported. Plus...what about the hundreds (yes hundreds) of murders of female factory workers in Juarez and surrounding border towns that have been going on since the early 90's, which are unsolved...

Anonymous said...

@March 8, 2011, 4:56PM

i agree totally with you! how are they not a political regime??? they control most of mexico and really have made many coup d'etats. they have for the most part over thrown mexicos government. they are mexicos government.

@ March 9, 2011 8:56 AM

i know you are probably some ignorant american that sees the cartels as nothing more than some street level thugs but they are a multi-billion dollar criminal enterprise! they have all the makings of a political regime. they have their own political agendas and campaigns. they have taken over not completely yet but they will if we don't help.

@March 8, 2011 6:53 AM & @ March 8, 2011 7:24 AM

what is your deal with the young lady that tried to make a difference as chief? she was just trying to help and realized there was no hope and felt her life was threatened. isn't it a moral duty as humans to protect someone when their country/people can't or won't do it?
or is she not worthy because she is mexican? please help me understand your thought process...

Anonymous said...

Yeah she's mexican we already have enough!!! send 'em all back!!!

Anonymous said...

@ March 9, 2011 11:40 AM

THE ONLY WORD I WILL SAY TO YOU IS "IGNORANT" THATS ALL! HAVE A NICE DAY!

Anonymous said...

@March 9, 2011, 11:14am

One, you obviously don't know the difference between "criminal" and "political." Your argument is the Drug Cartels should be considered as political entities within Mexico? Because as you say, they control Mexico. For that to happen foreign governments (i.e. U.S.) would have to recognize the "Mexican Drug Cartels" as legitimate political powers. That's not going to happen because the drug cartels are a criminal organizations. The U.S. recognizes Felipe Calderon's administration (PAN) as the legitimate government for Mexico. Now, if Calderon's administration was threatening/attacking this young lady for her political views then she could seek asylum in the U.S. I can't explain it any clearer then that...but even then you probably don't get it.

Drug Cartels are a multi-billion dollar enterprise? Really? and they have all the makings of a political regime...wow! and..geez they are going to take over soon..if "we" don't do something..First of all, the drug cartels have always been in Mexico and they've always used bribes, murder, extortion, etc...to get their way...nothing new. Secondly, I believe the Mexican government is doing something even though most people think they are only adding to the problem.

So let's say she makes into the U.S. as a "victim of the drug war." What about the other Mexican citizens, who are in the same boat. Are they to be let into the U.S. as well? Brave? She was brave for about 4 months...then she "high-tailed" it to the American border with her family seeking asylum. You call her a hero...she turned her back on same people she swore to protect (joke). She made the headlines because of her age and gender...nothing more, nothing less...

Anonymous said...

@March 9, 2011 2:50 PM

SO ONE GIRL IS SUPPOSED TO STAND UP AGAINST A CORRUP SYSTEM AND DRUG LORDS??? ONE GIRL??? SHE DIDN'T TURN HER BACK ON THEM THE MAYOR AND MEXICAN GOV'T TURNED THERE BACK ON THEM!!! YOU ARE RETARDED. I THINK THAT WE SHOULD GRANT ASYLUM TO EVERYONE THAT IS NOT BEING PROTECTED BY MEXICO'S GOVERNMENT!!! THEY JUST CAN'T DO IT!!! ILL-EQUIPPED AND NOT ENOUGH LOYALTY WITH THE GOVERNMENT BECAUSE THEY HAVE SHOWN NOTHING TO THE PEOPLE!!!

Anonymous said...

@March 9, 2011 3:17 PM

Retarded? That would be you and her. It was stupid for her to place herself in that position...make a difference? She was freakin 20 years old...She should have never been granted that position to began with, she was not even remotely qualified. Now, look at her...in the U.S. with her family waiting on a hearing to see if she qualifies for asylum (along with her family). She held office for little over 4 months...C'mon dude, if the drug cartels wanted her dead she would have been executed a long time ago. I'll wager, the fact she was fired and is no longer a threat to the drug cartels (like she ever was, she did'nt even arm herself), she could easily disappear/relocate to some other part of Mexico and resume her life. It's gonna be sad, when she gets denied and sent back to Mexico. There will be a another uproar, on how the U.S. failed to protect this woman..gimme a break. BTW, checkout the other posts on the same subject "21 year old...released from ICE detention center," there are plenty of other bloggers, who feel the same way.

Anonymous said...

@ 03/09, 3:17PM

She was not forced to become the police chief and apparently she's not stupid, in the sense she lacked any formal education. So, we have to assume she knew what she was getting into..I accept her vision of wanting to make a better Mexico, but clearly she used bad judgement in accepting the position. For instance, what happen to the police chief before her? Yea that's right...so, she did'nt think there would be a remote chance of her sharing the same fate? Now, a few months later her family and her in the U.S.

I can't help but think, if any of the drug cartels wanted this girl dead, she would have been murdered a long time ago. I mean she did hold office for a few months...I wonder why she was spared?

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