By Marisela Ortega / EL PASO TIMES
Officers from the Department of Traffic of Juárez will be able to carry weapons for their safety as a result of deadly attacks carried out by gunmen against two officers Tuesday afternoon, Juárez officials said.
"In light of those events, we are making changes in Traffic Unit policies in the matter," Juárez Mayor Héctor Murguía said in a statement. "It was a cowardly and sneaky action committed against both officers."
Murguía added that local police officers will escort traffic officers in order to prevent another deadly attack.
Two Juárez traffic officers were shot to death Tuesday afternoon while patrolling the streets. Both were unarmed.
"They (the killers) are trying to scare us away," Murguía said. "But we are not going to give in."
Javier García Herrera, 28, was gunned down Tuesday while riding his motorcycle on Panamerican Highway, officials said.
An hour later, another officer, Héctor Rodríguez Trevizo, 38, was shot to death while driving in his police unit on Juan Gabriel Avenue and Barranco Azul Street.
Juárez authorities took away the weapons carried out by traffic officers during the tenure of then-Juárez Mayor José Reyes Ferriz, a local official said who doesn't want to be named because he is not authorized to comment in the matter.
"Back then, they decided to remove those weapons from the officers," the official said. "The gunmen used to attack the traffic officers to steal their weapons."
Both victims were unable to fight back sincethey didn't have their weapons anymore.
For safety reasons, Murguía declined to disclose when the officers will be armed again nor would comment about the safety steps implemented to protect law enforcement officers.
Both killed officers were buried with honors, Murguía said.