A journalist in Tijuana was found dead in his home Tuesday night with obvious signs of trauma apparently caused by a sharp-edged weapon.
According to initial reports by local media, Pedro Damián Gómez, the director of a Facebook outlet called Panorama Político, was found dead in his home in Colonia Lomas de la Amistad. Panorama Político posts general news items and conducts interviews.
Local news outlets note that the Forensic Medical Service (Semefo) took custody of the body and will be forwarding final a report of findings to the State Attorney General’s Office (PGJE). The PGJE will be responsible for conducting the investigation into the death.
Pedro Damián Gómez is the third journalist killed in Mexico for 2018 thus far.
Mexico continues to be one of the most dangerous locations for journalists to work. Mexico saw 13 murdered journalists in 2017, however, that figure varies between press freedom organizations and their definitions. Some organizations reported only 12 while others show 14. Some press groups do not account for online-only reporters or citizen journalists.
Tijuana has been ravaged by cartel violence. This year alone, there have been 250 murders, according to local tallies.
In 2017, Tijuana registered 1,734–smashing the 2016 record of 910.
The murder rate continues to climb as rival drug cartels battle over control of key trafficking routes and street-level distribution, according to local media reports. The escalation can be attributed to the hostilities between the Sinaloa Cartel and their one-time ally, Cartel Jalisco Nueva Generacion (CJNG).
Robert Arce is a retired Phoenix Police detective with extensive experience working Mexican organized crime and street gangs. Arce has worked in the Balkans, Iraq, Haiti, and recently completed a three-year assignment in Monterrey, Mexico, working out of the Consulate for the United States Department of State, International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Program, where he was the Regional Program Manager for Northeast Mexico (Coahuila, Tamaulipas, Nuevo Leon, Durango, San Luis Potosi, Zacatecas.)