HomeNewsBriefGovt Commission Confirms Police Killings in Mexico Massacre
BRIEF

Govt Commission Confirms Police Killings in Mexico Massacre

MEXICO / 27 NOV 2015 BY MIMI YAGOUB EN

Mexico’s Human Rights Commission has accused the military and federal police of excessive use of force during a massacre this past January, but it’s doubtful the investigation will end up as anything more than a symbolic victory.

Mexico’s National Human Rights Commission (CDNH) has issued a recommendation (pdf) based on alleged human rights violations committed mainly by federal police forces during a massacre that left 10 people dead on January 6, 2015 in Apatzingan, Michoacan.

The report confirmed one extrajudicial killing in which the victim was shot despite having surrendered, while five others died as the result of excessive force.

One other person is suspected to have died after being hit by a federal police vehicle, while at least five people were arbitrarily detained and eight more were treated cruelly or inhumanely by military and police forces, according to the CNDH. 

The report states that police denied medical attention to four wounded individuals, leading to the death of one more person. Authorities are also accused of not adequately preserving the crime scene.

The massacre took place during two incidents that occurred on the same day, the first of which involved the deployment of 287 military troops and 44 federal police officers to Apatzingan’s town hall after it had been taken over by an armed group. The second incident happened hours later during a clash between federal police and self-defense forces.

SEE ALSO:  Mexico News and Profiles

The CNDH document urges the National Security Commissioner and the Defense Secretary to cooperate with authorities on ongoing investigations related to the case, for victims to be adequately compensated, and for the Attorney General’s Office (PGR) to modify the laws regulating the use of police force so that they meet international standards.

InSight Crime Analysis

The CNDH has put together a thorough case, but whether any significant consequences will come as a result of the investigation is another matter. Although the findings of the report are hard-hitting, a CNDH recommendation is merely a non-binding request for authorities to comply with certain demands.

Security analyst Alejandro Hope points out that Mexican authorities could very well heed the call for more security institutions to cooperate with the PGR, given the commission’s “political and moral weight.” However, that is about the extent of the commission’s influence on criminal proceedings, meaning its ability to bring flagrant public security officials to justice is quite limited. 

For instance, in October 2014 the CNDH found that Mexican soldiers had summarily executed at least 15 individuals in a warehouse last June. Seven soldiers were arrested in connection to the highly publicized massacre, but the charges against four of the soldiers have recently been dropped

These limitations fuel criticism that the CNDH is costly and ineffective. According to Excelsior, only one percent of all complaints reported to the CNDH become a recommendation, and many recommendations take at least 18 months before they are completed. 

Compartir icon icon icon

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.

Related Content

MEXICO / 27 JAN 2016

An ongoing investigation into the Zetas has revealed how this violent criminal group used a prison to dispose of…

EL CHAPO / 27 JAN 2017

US prosecutors have filed a memorandum detailing the lengthy criminal career of recently extradited Mexico drug lord Joaquín "El Chapo"…

COLOMBIA / 8 AUG 2012

A report from the Wilson Center charts how prohibitionist policies have caused drug trafficking organizations in the Americas to splinter,…

About InSight Crime

THE ORGANIZATION

We Have Updated Our Website

4 FEB 2021

Welcome to our new home page. We have revamped the site to create a better display and reader experience.

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime Events – Border Crime: The Northern Triangle and Tri-Border Area

ARGENTINA / 25 JAN 2021

Through several rounds of extensive field investigations, our researchers have analyzed and mapped out the main illicit economies and criminal groups present in 39 border departments spread across the six countries of study – the Northern Triangle trio of Guatemala, Honduras, and El…

BRIEF

InSight Crime’s ‘Memo Fantasma’ Investigation Wins Simón Bolívar National Journalism Prize

COLOMBIA / 20 NOV 2020

The staff at InSight Crime was awarded the prestigious Simón Bolívar national journalism prize in Colombia for its two-year investigation into the drug trafficker known as “Memo Fantasma,” which was…

ANALYSIS

InSight Crime – From Uncovering Organized Crime to Finding What Works

COLOMBIA / 12 NOV 2020

This project began 10 years ago as an effort to address a problem: the lack of daily coverage, investigative stories and analysis of organized crime in the Americas. …

ANALYSIS

InSight Crime – Ten Years of Investigating Organized Crime in the Americas

FEATURED / 2 NOV 2020

In early 2009, Steven Dudley was in Medellín, Colombia. His assignment: speak to a jailed paramilitary leader in the Itagui prison, just south of the city. Following his interview inside…