A minor was among three people who were being held Sunday for their involvement in the killing of the newly inaugurated mayor in a central Mexican city.
Mayor Gisela Mota was shot dead in her home in the city of Temixco a day after she had been sworn in as mayor. Morelos Gov. Graco Ramirez said organized crime was responsible for the slaying. In a pursuit following the shooting, two attackers were killed while three others were detained, Jesus Alberto Capella, Morelos security commissioner, said, as reported by Yahoo News. The suspects fired on police from a vehicle, Capella said.
Ramirez described Mota as a “young and beloved companion.” In a statement, the slain mayor’s leftist Democratic Revolution Party said that Mota was “a strong and brave woman who on taking office as mayor, declared that her fight against crime would be frontal and direct.”
Ramon Castro Castro, Roman Catholic bishop of Cuernavaca who celebrated Mass at Mota’s home Sunday, spoke about organized crime. “One theory could be that it was a warning to the other mayors. If you don’t cooperate with organized crime, look at what will happen to you. It’s to scare them.”
Two suspects were killed in a conflict with the police following Mota’s slaying. Three others, including a 32-year-old woman, 18-year-old man, and a minor were taken into custody. State Attorney General Javier Perez Duron said the trio had been involved in other crimes.
However, it has not been made clear which criminal organization might be behind the mayor’s killing.
Temixco, located around 60 miles south of Mexico City, is the fourth largest city in the state of Morelos and houses a population of around 100,000 people. Temixco is one of the country’s most violent cities.
The Association of Local Authorities of Mexico, an organization that represents mayors in Mexico, said that as many as 100 mayors had been killed in the country in the last decade, ABC News reports. The killings have occurred, the organization added, “principally at the hands of organized crime.”