The killings that have rocked the Sinaloa cartel stronghold of Culiacan since the murder of Pancho Arce "El Artista" on October 31 continued into this week with the murders of 9 persons Thursday night, November 10.
Arce was a high level grupo Antrax criminal, reportedly being fourth in the group's heirarchy (Arce was also known as "El Cuatro"). Grupo Antrax is one of several paramilitary type organizations that are loyal to the Sinaloa Cartel.
The murders and attacks that occurred Thursday may have been reprisals by Antrax gangmembers, but who the targets of the violence are is uncertain. The people of Culiacan fear that the violence may grow completely out of control in an already violent city.
Thursday night, gunfights were reported in at least five different areas of the city. Local news sources and the authorities reported that a gunfight in the colonia Felipe Angeles resulted in the deaths of four men and the wounding of two others. Some residents of the area stated that the gunfight included grenades and lasted about an hour, and that the number of dead and wounded was higher.
Thursday afternoon three men were executed in the colonia Miguel Hidalgo. The victims were shot at close range with AK-47's. Two of the men died at the scene of the shooting and a third man died shortly after reaching a hospital.
Thursday morning the decapitated bodies of two youths were found wrapped in plastic bags on a dirt road in the Tres Rios area. Both youths had been abducted a day earlier from an OXXO convenience store.