Reporting on the Mexican Cartel Drug War

Eighth Juarez Police Officer Killed this Month

Saturday, January 28, 2012 |

By Alejandro Martínez-Cabrera
El Paso Times

Police investigate the scene where a Juarez police officer was killed Saturday morning. This is the eighth police officer murdered this month.

Another Juárez police agent was shot and killed this morning, bringing the number of officers slain this year to eight.

The attack occurred before 10 a.m. today near the intersection of Cartamo and Garambullo Streets, in Colonia Granjero, a spokesperson with the state prosecutor's office said.

Details remain unclear. A spokesperson with the municipal police department did not return calls to comment.

On Friday morning, two police agents were ambushed and gunned down, officials said. The two officers -- a man and woman -- were killed by a group of armed men when they headed into work, said Adrián Sánchez, a police spokesman.

Two police commanders were also killed earlier this month. On Wednesday, two other police officers were shot after finishing their shift, and another officer was killed earlier.

This week's killings follow Wednesday's discovery of about 10 banners, allegedly signed by members of the so-called New Juárez Cartel, in different parts of the city.

The messages, addressed to Juárez Police Chief Julián Leyzaola, threaten to kill a police agent every day.

Officer slayings increase: Juárez killings may point to surge in violence, experts say
The recent wave of police slayings in Juárez may signal increased bloodshed reminiscent of the early stages of the current safety crisis, experts said Friday.

Two police agents were ambushed and gunned down Friday morning, bringing to seven the number of officers killed so far this year, officials said.

The two officers -- a man and woman -- were killed by a group of armed men when they headed into work, said Adrián Sánchez, a police spokesman.

Their names have not been released.

Two police commanders also were killed earlier this month. On Wednesday, two other police officers were shot after finishing their shift, and another officer was killed earlier.



Friday's killings follow Wednesday's discovery of about 10 banners, allegedly signed by members of the so-called New Juárez Cartel, in different parts of the city.

The messages, addressed to Juárez Police Chief Julián Leyzaola, threaten to kill a police agent every day to force Leyzaola to resign.

Leyzaola dismissed the signs and said threats are not going to stop his efforts to fight criminals.
Sánchez said his agency had mounted an operation to find the officers' killers. He added that for now, police weren't linking Friday's slayings to the banners.

"We aren't linking them to anything," he said.

Hours after the slayings, Leyzaola met with Juárez Mayor Héctor "Teto" Murguía at city hall behind closed doors, a city spokesman said. Details of the meeting are unknown, but it is likely they discussed Friday's police casualties, the spokesman said.

A police news release on Friday asked anyone with information on the attacks to contact the authorities.

"The police officers of Juárez continue to do their work, even when the cost is something as precious as their lives," it said. "Crime will end when citizens decide to end it by fighting it through their reports."

Juárez City Manager Héctor Arcelús said he thought the recent slayings were connected to the police department's recent work.

"It is definitely a reaction of organized crime. The mayor's instructions were to fight crime and we have. In no way will we discontinue our intent to do so," he said.

Arcelús said municipal authorities are discussing the safety of police officers, but he did not mention the adoption of any new security measures.

"We have identified several measures, but because of safety concerns, we're not revealing them," he said.

Police officers have told local media that they would feel safer if they could carry their 9mm handguns after work hours. Because of city guidelines, police officers must must return their handguns when their shifts end.

Arcelús said local authorities have discussed the measure but did not add any details. Since 2008, when a war broke out between the Juárez and Sinaloa drug cartels, more than 9,300 people have been killed in Juárez.

University of Texas at El Paso Professor Howard Campbell said the recent attacks on the municipal police bring back memories of the early days of 2008, when hit lists with the names of specific police officers began to appear throughout the city.

"Those threats were carried out, and these (slayings) are very similar," he said.

Campbell added that the attacks could be the beginning of a new surge in violence.

"Obviously this is an attack on Leyzaola, but I would guess it's also a struggle to control drug sales and other criminal enterprises like extortion rackets and the informal economy," he said. "I'm sure Leyzaola is going to fight back, and that's the ominous part. This thing could explode again."

Scott Stewart, vice president of tactical intelligence at a geopolitical analysis company, Stratfor, agreed that the slayings could lead to a rebound in violence, but that it would probably be smaller in dimension and would eventually lead to a downturn.

"I seriously don't think the remnants of the VCF (Vicente Carrillo Fuentes cartel) have the power they had in '08," he said.

"They are significantly weaker and will continue to be weakened as law enforcement reacts to these killings."

In a recent report, Stratfor attributed a recent decrease in violence in Juárez to what seems to be the Sinaloa cartel's consolidation of power in the region and dominance over its rival Juárez cartel.
Stewart said the slayings showed that the New Juárez Cartel -- which he said is likely to be a "rebranding" of the Juárez cartel after heavy losses to its leadership last year -- is still fighting to hold on to its territory.

"The VCF is trying desperately to hold on to their plaza," he said. "Sinaloa is basically like a boa constrictor choking them out."

But Campbell thought Stratfor overestimated the Sinaloa cartel's grip on the region and said it was too early to say Juárez was on its road to recovery.

"Summertime is usually the most violent time in the city. We also have to consider the effects of the (coming Mexican presidential) elections and the fact that the Sinaloa cartel doesn't seem to be supreme," Campbell said.

"This war seems to continue and the potential is there for things to get back as they were."

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13 Borderland Beat Comments:

Anonymous said...

They have to turn their guns in after work?!? And you can't have a weapon as a Mexican citizen!?! WTF????????

Anonymous said...

I hope the Sinaloa Cartel make this bastards pay for killing the police. Arriba El Chapo Guzman.

Anonymous said...

PUTO COWARDS!

Anonymous said...

Hey, Mexico! How do you like the criminal cartels now? You have been feeding this beast for decades and now it is going to eat Mexico from the inside out... So it was not a good idea to turn a blind eye for all of these years was it? Allowing the cartels to do what ever they want and to idolize one against the other was very, very stupid because now they are turning on YOU and your country... It is going to take a civil war with other countries heavily involved to ever fix the problems that Mexico has created for the world and can you imagine all of the developing children that have been mentally and emotionally traumatized? Generation upon generation is scarred for life and it is a long, long, long ways from ever being over with... You should be deeply ashamed of your people and your country for what you have created for the world...

Anonymous said...

these cops are fucking pigs with badges.. they kill, leyzaola is one of the worst faces of corruption and his little act that he is the good cop does not fool anyone.. the juarez cartel is going to act and more people supporting sinaloa will fall all over the city especially the corrupt cops.. a new wave of violence will start in juarez..

Anonymous said...

All this is a front simply killing the local stock under false pretense and filling in the empty shoes with Sinaloa foot soldiers . This was planned before the asshole Leyzaola arrived in town. The New Juarez Cartel is a Sinaloa front. How do u take over a group? From within :)

Anonymous said...

VCF or El Viceroy,whose brother had an estimated amount of 25 Billion dollars,is barely getting started.Just imagine how many shipments hes gotten across while still fighting El Chapo,and theres always have been/gonna be people who will kill for money.

Anonymous said...

I also believe what jan 28 6:12 just posted I believe leyzaola is being bought off by sinaloa cartel I believe he is getting rid of certain cops that he knows are decent people trying to do good and I believe he is replacing them with sinaloa cartel hitmen you all have to remember how sinaloa works they buy cops off and always seem to mind fuck every1 the new jaurez cartel is sinaloa cartel how do you think jaurez cartel could survive in a plaza now controled by sinaloa especially how are they gonna survive following officers 24/7 these killings are being done by sinaloa hitmen with addresses being provided by police chief leyzaola or sinaloa hitmen following these officers 24/7 then killing them and posting it being done by new jaurez cartel

Anonymous said...

Hey, Mexico! How do you like the criminal cartels now? WHEN YOUR RIGHT,YOUR RIGHT. This been coming a long time,and no one did anything about it.Now look what you got.And they still can't get their priorities right.Maybe a lost cause people,grim but true.

Anonymous said...

Obviously the juarez cartel can't count.

Anonymous said...

man o man...here in juarez...the damn cds does not control shit!!!stop publizing this shit!!!the juarez cartel is here,evrey damn where!!!

Anonymous said...

juarez cartel can count,dumb ass.they announced one they would kill one officer every day,8 days ago,dumb ass,the day they put 10 narcobanners across juarez,its been 8 day,its been 8 chapo cops killed!!!dumb ass

Anonymous said...

yup in juarez you see cartel de juarez everywhere.. sinaloa ? well only in the police and jail guards because those are the places the cds can buy and let me tell you they live in fear because theyre being hunted like dogs but the streets are run by the juarez cartel no doubt about that.. i dare anyone to go to juarez and put those lame ass chapo narco corridos jaja youll probably last a couple of songs alive

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