Sunday, June 20, 2010

Puerto Penasco Police Chief Gunned Down

Yes it's true, there's no denying it. Just before 11:00 p.m. on Saturday, June 19, Police Chief Erick Landagaray Macías was ambushed in front of the Bimbo Bread (Pan Bimbo) warehouse on Rio Suchiate Blvd. He was critically wounded and early this morning (June 20) was flown to a hospital in Hermosillo, where he is still fighting for his life as of this writing.

Landagaray's security guard was also wounded, but is expected to make a full recovery. No one else was hurt, and at this time the assailants are not known.

An investigation into the ambush is ongoing.

I don't have further details that I can confirm at this moment, and I'm not going to speculate. When I have more news I'll let you know.

UPDATE: Below is the official press release about this incident from the city of Puerto Penasco, translated into English by Rosie Glover from Rocky Point News Online:

Official Press Release from City Administration, Puerto Penasco
- Translated by Rosie Glover
20 June 2010

For the General Public:
The Municipal Government laments and condemns the attempt on the lives of the Chief of Municipal Police and his bodyguard last night, Saturday, and will step up efforts to maintain the safety of the citizenry.

From the moment of the assault, communication was established between local, Federal and State law enforcement entities. Their intervention and assistance was solicited so that this crime will not go unpunished. All levels of government are committed to working together in this investigation.

We are confident that this type of occurrence will not repeat itself in our city, as we wish to offer tranquility and security for all families.

We are receiving updates on the conditions of our companions Erick Landagaray Macias and Luis Huerta Ibarra. The latest reports indicate that the police chief is in stable but very critical condition. His bodyguard is reportedly out of danger and doing as well as can be expected.

Both families have the complete support of the Municipal Government, as well as our wishes for a speedy recovery.

The people of Puerto Penasco are being asked to avoid rumors and false speculations that only serve to alarm the public. We will see to it that all relevant information is communicated to the public in a timely manner.

We reiterate our commitment to work together with State and Federal authorities to strengthen security in the City and avoid any further violent incidents.

I will say that Rocky Point is full of visitors this weekend, mostly from Arizona but also from other US States and Mexican cities, and not only were none of them injured but none of them even knew it had happened. They, and the expats living in town, have gone about their usual pursuits without interruption. Americans and tourists in general have not been and are not being targeted.

It's bad news, yes it surely is, and my heart goes out to his family, but it's no reason to panic. As is the case anywhere else, keep your eyes open, don't leave your brains at the border, and you'll be fine.

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