Blog dedicated to reporting on Mexican drug cartels
on the border line between the US and Mexico

Monday, May 9, 2022

Cancún: Hitmen Shoot Up Bars, Killing 1, Injuring 7

"HEARST" for Borderland Beat

The killing of one man by a group of cartel hitmen was captured by security footage. The shooting was part of a series of attacks on two restaurants in the downtown area of the tourist destination of Cancún, in the state of Quintana Roo, which left seven others injured.

Shooting 1: Déjà Vu Restaurant

At approximately 9:00 pm during the night of Friday, May 6, 2022, two vehicles full of cartel hitmen parked in front of the restaurant Déjà Vu. The restaurant is located on Kabah Avenue, near the intersection with Tules Avenue, in the nightlife heart of the tourist resort town of Cancún. The restaurant was relatively new and had both outdoor and indoor seating. 

The hitmen exited their vehicles and opened fire on the crowd of diners. Five to six people were wounded by the gunfire. Four of the wounded were waiters at the restaurant identified as Enrique ‘G’, Emanuel ‘R’, Ezequiel ‘Z’ and Pablo ‘C’.

According an article by Noticaribe, one of the gunmen was heard saying “Ahora sí ya se los llevó la chingada”, which translates to roughly “now you’re all fucked.”

People shopping at the nearby Multi Plaza, a busy shopping center across the road, heard the gunfire and panicked, unsure of the location of the shots. Various civilians near the shooting recorded the sound of the gunfire in videos that were later uploaded to social media. 

The shooting caused panic and many diners fled the area, taking shelter in nearby businesses like La Palapita Kabah and even the parking lot of the supermarket Bodega Aurrerá. The Deja Vu gunmen were witnessed fleeing in the direction of Galaxias del Sol after the shooting.

Shooting 2:  Las Micheladas del Tío Toño Restaurant

A few minutes later, a different group of cartel hitmen arrived at the restaurant Las Micheladas del Tío Toño, which is located further down Kabah Avenue, near the Niños Héroes intersection. 

These hitmen seem to be a different group because they arrived in a cab, a Nissan Sentra, unlike the two vehicles that arrived at Deja Vu, which were a Jeep Grand Cherokee SUV and a Chevy. Las Micheladas del Tío Toño is another restaurant with both indoor and outdoor seating, as well as a small stage used to host live music. 

The exact moment when the hitmen arrived at Las Micheladas del Tío Toño was captured by a security camera, shown below. Note that the video is graphic in nature and depicts the killing of a man who worked for Las Michelada. Some articles say the man was acting as a security guard (such as this one from The Yucatan Times) while others refer to him as a waiter/host, (such as this one from La Verdad Noticias), who checked their reservations and led guests to their table. 

Warning: Video is graphic. Depicts a man being shot to death.

Note: If you cannot view the video here, you can view it on Twitter at the link here, as posted by Milenio newspaper reporter Azucena Uresti.

In the video, the security guard for the restaurant is seen near a small desk at the entrance to La Micheladas. In the background, past the small parking lot of the establishment and behind a banner, a white Nissan Sentra cab can be seen parked on the street. 

The security guard sits down at a stool behind the desk just as the hitmen appear to exit the white vehicle. The hitmen approach as a group, walking across the parking lot and crossing towards the restaurant. The security guard notices them and watches them. Then one of the gunmen begins to shoot at him with what appears to be a pistol, firing multiple rounds. 

The guard ducks to lie down on the ground, trying to take cover behind the desk but all three hitmen move in closer. One of the hitmen rounds the gate and gets a clear shot at the guard lying down, who is just starting to try to lift his head off the ground. The hitmen fires a shot at close range into the guard’s neck which causes him to crumple, going limp. 

All three gunmen then appear to shoot indiscriminately into the crowd of restaurant diners. They all appear to be using pistols.  The clip then ends, as the gunmen are still shooting at the crowd. A different man was seriously injured by the gunmen and had to be Cancun General Hospital.

Aftermath of the Shootings

Forensic personnel recovered more than 50 percussion casings, mainly of which were 9mm rounds. 

The man who was shot in the video of Las Micheladas was transported to the Cancun General Hospital but he was declared dead upon arrival. On social media, his family chose to identify him as their relative Miguel. Miguel was married and had one child with his wife. 

A family member wrote of his death: “I can't believe it, you were so young and so eager to get ahead, always giving everything of yourself, why did you have to leave us so soon? You don't know how you destroy the lives of all your loved ones and family, I can't believe this is real, why did you have to leave us so soon?”

A friend of his wrote: "My little brother, how I regret not being able to say goodbye to you with a lump in my throat and tears in my eyes."

The Quintana Roo Prosecutor's Office later released a statement in which they reported that so far one person related to the shooting has been arrested. They did not reveal his name or the place where he was captured.


The motive behind these attacks may have to do with extortion attempts by cartel organizations in the area, with them demanding all businesses in certain areas pay a “protection” fee and non-payment can be retaliated with attacks such as this. 

Generally speaking, it is also possible with any shooting at a restaurant that the bars of the establishment acts as a drug sale point. An attack can be due to the supplier of said drugs being a rival cartel organization. However based on reviews of the locations, the restaurants appear to be family and tourist centric so it appears, as of now, to be more likely that the bars were not drug related and attacks are purely extortion related.

According to Turquesa News, in September 2021, a group of men tried to set Las Micheladas del Tío Toño on fire. They managed to cause significant fire damage but the establishment was able to rebuild and recover from the arson attack.

Acts of arson, especially in vacation towns such as Cabo San Lucas, Acapulco, and Cancún, is a common method of punishing businesses for not paying a cartel’s fee, called “de piso”, for doing business in the area. For other examples of arson related to cartel extortion, please see this previous Borderland Beat story on the Baby O nightclub in Acapulco.

There appears to be at least one cartel cracking down and attacking businesses currently because on Thursday, May 5, 2022, just the night before this attack, two more nightlife establishments were shot up in Cancún. 

The two that were hit on Thursday were called Poseidon and Las Canoas. These shootings gained less attention because there were no footage of the attacks and only two people were injured. 

Newspaper El País writes that “violence in the state of Quintana Roo has escalated in the last year. Attacks on tourists and nightclubs have put the spotlight on security in Mexico's tourist jewel. The situation has even attracted the attention of foreign security agencies, such as the FBI.” The Quintana Roo state government has acknowledged that some of the extortion-related statistics towards businesses that cater to tourists have increased but insist that overall violence in the region is down.

Sources: FGE Official Statement, Noticaribe, The Yucatan Times, Vallarta Daily, El Pais, Poresto, La Verdad Noticias, Reforma, Faro Informa, Turquesa News


  1. Only rated G videos are allowed on BB, oh brother the good old days when Sol would dig up videos, that make your hair go up are over.
    I did see the video on another website, it does show 3 men, coming to shoot up the place and the man who they first shot, was more like a host, at front to seat people down, he had no security uniform, nor a gun belt. The video does show the shooting, but should have made it onto BB.

    1. Yeah. Not sure how or when the content policy has been enforced in the past. It is the first time I have gotten a removal message from Blogger.

      Hope the twitter link to the video works for everyone interested in viewing. If you guys want me to link to it hosted on another website besides twitter, let me know.

    2. Knowing there are so many criminals on the loose, owners and actorities never fail to get caught with their panties down, it works perfecly for the protection rackets, and there can only be one reason, collusion...even Al Capone had to shoot it out with the cuicos and his enemies once in a while but these mexican security experts are Fuller Men, fuller of shit, BOYCOTT CANCUN, don't get murdered with the tourism.

    3. Hearst thanks for the info. Cancun is a tourist area. Wonder if the injured that survived are US citizens, as tourist may stop going.

    4. Sol Prendido managed to reupload the video for me, so hopefully it will stay up this time.

    5. With Blogger you're forced to employ trickery just to get it to work at times.

  2. Poor guy minding his own business and gets shot up, like a stray dog.

  3. Remind me not to travel to Cancun.


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