HomeNewsBriefNorthern Mexico City Shuts Down Bars as Violence Escalates
BRIEF

Northern Mexico City Shuts Down Bars as Violence Escalates

HOMICIDES / 8 JAN 2013 BY EDWARD FOX EN

Authorities in the northern Mexican city of Torreon may close down as many as 17 businesses following a spate of deadly attacks, as violence shows no sign of abating in this hotspot for criminal activity.

In a pre-emptive move, authorities in Torreon shut down eight bars deemed to be "high risk" areas, reported Proceso. The decision was reportedly based in part on police intelligence.

The shutting down of the businesses followed a week of intense violence, in which 15 people were killed and scores injured in attacks carried out in at least five other bars across the city. Police have attributed the attacks to gangs fighting each other for control of drug trafficking in Coahuila state, where Torreon is located.

According to Milenio, city authorities may move to close another nine establishments, including a rehabilitation center, by the end of this week.

InSight Crime Analysis

Not only is Torreon currently one of Mexico's most violent cities, but it has seen one of the most dramatic increases in homicides during Felipe Calderon's six-year presidential term. Last year saw 761 murders, close to a 20-fold increase from 2006, when just 39 homicides were registered.

Not only have criminal groups have carried out brazen attacks in public establishments, they have also been blamed for a violent campaign against the police. A series of targeted attacks against the Federal Police saw two officers killed in the space of five weeks last year. 

While shutting down the "high risk" establishments seems intended to shield Torreon residents from further attacks, the move also underscores the inability of the security forces to fully protect the area. Ultimately, closing down these "high risk" locales may only serve to push the violence to other parts of the city.

Much of the increase in violence has been attributed to the arrival of the Zetas in 2007, and the ensuing battle with rival group the Sinaloa Cartel for control of the drug trafficking trade. However, according to local officials, the city's homicide rates continue to climb even though the Zetas have been weakened considerably. This suggests, smaller, more local groups may be the primary drivers of violence now.

share icon icon icon

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

What are your thoughts? Click here to send InSight Crime your comments.

We encourage readers to copy and distribute our work for non-commercial purposes, with attribution to InSight Crime in the byline and links to the original at both the top and bottom of the article. Check the Creative Commons website for more details of how to share our work, and please send us an email if you use an article.

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

Related Content

ARMS TRAFFICKING / 18 JUL 2013

Mexico's Defense Ministry has requested $40 million over the next five years to buy more modern weaponry, as its aging…

GULF CARTEL / 22 JUN 2021

Though the motive for the rampage in the northern Mexican border city of Reynosa that left scores of civilians dead…

MEXICO / 17 MAY 2012

Messages signed in the name of the Zetas have appeared in Mexico, denying that the group left 49 mutilated bodies…

About InSight Crime

THE ORGANIZATION

Guatemala Social Insecurity Investigation Makes Front Page News

10 DEC 2021

InSight Crime’s latest investigation into a case of corruption within Guatemala's social security agency linked to the deaths of patients with kidney disease made waves in…

THE ORGANIZATION

Venezuela El Dorado Investigation Makes Headlines

3 DEC 2021

InSight Crime's investigation into the trafficking of illegal gold in Venezuela's Amazon region generated impact on both social media and in the press. Besides being republished and mentioned by several…

THE ORGANIZATION

Gender and Investigative Techniques Focus of Workshops

26 NOV 2021

On November 23-24, InSight Crime conducted a workshop called “How to Cover Organized Crime: Investigation Techniques and A Focus on Gender.” The session convened reporters and investigators from a dozen…

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime Names Two New Board Members

19 NOV 2021

In recent weeks, InSight Crime added two new members to its board. Joy Olson is the former executive director of the Washington Office on Latin America…

THE ORGANIZATION

Senate Commission in Paraguay Cites InSight Crime

12 NOV 2021

InSight Crime’s reporting and investigations often reach the desks of diplomats, security officials and politicians. The latest example occurred in late October during a commission of Paraguay's Senate that tackled…