A young couple in the border state of Sonora were gunned down in their parked truck at a Walmart on Christmas Eve.
A group of cartel gunmen fired more than 150 rounds from AK-47 and AR-15 rifles at approximately 5:20 pm on Christmas Eve amid last-minute shoppers, according to local reporting. The gunmen then fled in the same vehicle they had arrived in.
The Walmart in Ciudad Obregón is located near the Arizona border. According to investigators, the two victims were identified Juan Manuel A. V. and Alexia V., approximately 23 to 25 years of age. Investigators did not release a motive, but Breitbart News has reported extensively on the cartel violence throughout Sonora and Cajeme in particular.
Cajeme saw a 68 percent spike in murders from July to September. As of Christmas Day, a total of 274 homicides were registered in 2018 with 14 in December alone. The previous annual record was set in 2017 with 228. Victims riddled with gunfire from high-caliber rifles are a local trademark for cartel killings.
Local law enforcement contacts in Ciudad Obregón report that the current cartel war in Sonora is primarily between the Sinaloa Cartel’s “Los Chapitos” (sons of “El Chapo” Guzman) against Fausto Isidro Meza Flores, Aka “Chapo Isidro.” The latter is a former Sinaloa Cartel ally now aligned with remnants of the Beltran Leyva organization.
In September, Breitbart News reported on the shocking discovery of seven heads abandoned in an ice cooler in rural Bácum, Sonora, which was related to the ongoing territorial war in Cajeme.
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.) You can follow him on Twitter. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org