UPDATED 1:54 PM PT — Monday, January 7, 2019
Violence is continuing to plague the city of Tijuana, where multiple police officers were recently shot by one of Mexico’s biggest cartels.
A squad full of cartel hitmen drove into a Chinese restaurant last Thursday, where they opened fire on local officers who were having dinner there. The hitmen are reportedly members of the Jalisco Nueva Generacion Cartel, which is one of the up-and-coming drug trafficking groups in recent years. It was first founded in 2009 in the state of Jalisco, Mexico.
According to Tijuana’s Secretary of Public Security Marco Antonio Sotomayor, the hitmen men were carrying AK-47’s to strike their targets.
“We know which collective group it is and we have the names of the individuals of who control that group and the ones who are responsible of this cowardly homicide, but we can say it’s the Cartel de Jalisco, though we would like like to not reveal the names of those individuals who we believe are responsible — as of now, we will work behind the scenes to bring them into justice,” said Sotomayor.
The incident left one of the officers dead, another officer wounded, and an employee at the local dining place was also wounded. The dead officer has been identified as Fidencio Figueroa Rodriguez, and the wounded officer is Omar Araujo. The wounded restaurant employee’s name has not yet been publicized, though he is expected to have a safe recovery after being struck on his arm during the attack.
The attack specifically took place in the colony of Sanchez Toboada, which is an area in Tijuana where the Jalisco Nueva Generacion Cartel has control and which has experienced a spike in homicides.
“We are going to do everything possible to punish these suspects, but to be honest, we do need help — the municipal police is already putting in loads of effort to bring security to the city,” stated Maria Martinez, Director of the Tijuana Municipal Police. “Our constitution says that the the federation, the state and the municipal has the obligation to grant full security to its people.”
An astonishing 25,000 murders happened in Tijuana in 2018, which is a record breaking high in a city which was already one of the most dangerous in the world.