During the last hours of this Saturday, August 7, the streets of Irapuato, Guanajuato, were shrouded in terror when several alleged hired killers carried out a massacre, shooting at a home and executing eight people. The first reports indicated that around 10:00 p.m., the shots were fired on Santa Carolina street, located in the Santa Maria neighborhood. For several minutes, the shots were heard, so the neighbors were alerted and called the emergency number 911 to request help.
Officers and paramedics arrived in the area to assist to the seven men and one woman who were injured by gunshot wounds. However, the first aid was useless because none of the victims showed vital signs after a few minutes. According to witnesses, the gunmen drove a vehicle from which they shot at the people outside the house. Police cordoned off the area to await the arrival of experts and agents of the Deputy District Attorney's Office, region B, to begin the corresponding investigations and the removal of the bodies.
As soon as this information was made public, Libia García, Secretary of Government of Guanajuato took a position on the matter and condemned these actions, while confirming coordinated work to search for and find the alleged perpetrators of the armed attack. Unofficial sources said that three armed subjects entered the home where a party was being held, asked for a person and, when they did not get an answer, one of them pulled out a gun and pointed it at the attendees. Suddenly, the music stopped and the shooting and shouting began.
After the attack was registered, authorities deployed a search operation in the surrounding area, which attempted to locate a red van and a motorcycle, which was secured, presumably in which the men were traveling. According to preliminary information, some gunshots were heard in the vicinity of División del Norte. While on the Cuarto Cinturón Vial, the truck of the alleged assailants caused an accident during their escape, so they abandoned it near Libramiento Norte.
So far, no arrests have been reported. Neither the municipal president of Irapuato, Ricardo Ortiz Gutiérrez, the State Attorney General's Office (FGE) nor the Security Secretariat of Guanajuato has made any statement regarding these events. The state of Guanajuato has become the most violent city in 2021. According to the Secretariat of Security and Citizen Protection (SSPC) security report, 1,800 homicides have been registered from January to June.
This figure has increased over time due to a fierce struggle between the Jalisco Cartel - New Generation (CJNG) and the Santa Rosa de Lima Cartel, which are fighting to extend their power in the state. The sale of crystal meth became an attractive source of income and power that could give them an advantage over their adversaries.
Guanajuato, Mexico's most violent state in 2020
Throughout the country, 71 massacres occurred in which at least 486 people were killed in 22 states. The entities that reported the most cases were Guanajuato, with 20 massacres; Zacatecas, with 8; Michoacán, with 7; Guerrero, with 4; and San Luis Potosí, with 4. The victims were civilians, police officers, musicians, indigenous people, and children who were traveling on roads or who were attacked while in their homes or their stores.
The massacre that claimed the most victims was the one recorded in Irapuato on the first day of July 2020, in the community of Arandas, where a commando executed 27 young people and left 5 injured. The state of central Mexico began this year as 2020 ended: in nine days at least three massacres have been registered. In the last one, three adults and a one-year-old baby were killed in the city of Celaya. The events occurred early Saturday morning when National Guard (GN) agents observed a house on fire in the private neighborhood of El Pedregal.
Two groups fight to control most of the criminal territory in Guanajuato: the New Generation Jalisco Cartel, and the Santa Rosa de Lima Cartel, whose leader, José Antonio Yépez Ortiz - nicknamed the "Marro" - was arrested in August last year. However, that was not enough to bring the killings down. In 2020, cut to November, Guanajuato registered 4,190 victims of intentional homicide, according to official figures. That is 12% of the total 34,523 intentional homicides registered in the country in 2020.