It would not be accurate to say Tijuana, nor it's almost entirely apathetic overbearing neighbor of San Diego was shocked by the murders of a young couple in Playas De Tijuana, Coronado section last Monday, but it was noticed. Noticed, for their age, their relationship, and facebook pictures showed a smiling, attractive couple in barely in their 20's. They were both students of Universities in Tijuana.
It's easier to self identify with these victims, then the often nameless, bound, tortured, garroted men in dirty urine stained jeans, dumped in Sanchez Tadoaba, or Zona Norte tienderos bleeding out on the sidewalk, before the municipals can close off the scene. It makes for a more impactful tragedy when a picturesque couple is gunned down, while sitting in their vehicle.
It's crucial not to blame the victims, or discount them, which is a technique that is depressingly effective in Mexico, and the US, to emotionally distance themselves from crime, and apply a kind of fatalistic disconnect between the dead, and their own existence. 'Of course they were killed, they were mixed up with narcos'. That's the kind of sentiment expressed all too often.
A sentiment that excuses shocking and demeaning atrocities, teenage girls assaulted, brutalized and dumped in the street, families executed in their homes, 19 year old boys executed in front of their families, a kind of brutal degradation that would seem impossible to justify.
Vianey Ruiz Moreno and Ricardo Moreno Renteria were seated in a car, parked outside a home, last Monday night, in the mid evening. Three .40 caliber bullets struck Ricardo Moreno in the face, neck, and arm, he died on the scene. One bullet entered the temple of Vianey Ruiz, she also died on the scene. 10 shell casings were recovered on the scene. The killing was described as a 'direct, clever attack against the two. There must be some problem here'
Problems like unpaid debts, and old grudges, lost shipments, and broken promises, unreturned phone calls, and drunken confrontations. Power and madness, bloodlust and business.
Zeta Tijuana reports that interviews with members of the family contained allegations the father of Ricardo Moreno had introduced his son to drug trafficking, and he was involved in trafficking to the United States. Reports also indicate the mother of Vianey was kidnapped several years back, and released after paying the random.
Pictures tell us a lot, but they can be deceiving, images that create reactions, which may be more complex then our explanations. His open collared Burberry polo in one picture, her Michael Kors bag in another, her features, which perhaps are surgically enhanced. It's morbid speculation, to analyze the shirt or breast implants of the deceased.... I suppose, but murders and .40 caliber bullets leave this in their wake. Pictures, snapshots, hushed allegations, and very tragic circumstances of death, that leave many questions.
Their was another body found that night in Playas, tossed on the street. Two more last night in Zona Norte, and nearly 500 this year. They all have stories behind them, their is a series of events, conditions, choices, families that put these events in motions, their faces behind the dead, and faces behind the bullets. You can buy dozens of roses for your girlfriend, and traffic drugs with the same hands, you can buy groceries the morning after laying in wait outside a home in Playas, in front of the dark sky, and walk away into the darkness, as blood runs down the Jetta's seats, and the stillness of death lingers in the air, in the streets, throughout a city.
Sources: AFN Tijuana, Zeta Tijuana