Mexico: Murders in 12 States Reach Historic Levels

February 10, 2017 - Tepic, México - Mexican State and federal police stand on guard at Colonia Lindavista area, Tepic, Mexico, on 10 February 2017, where alleged drug dealer Juan Francisco Padron Sanchez, aka 'El H-2', considered an important member of the Beltran Leyva Cartel, was killed during a shooting with troops from the Navy Secretariat of Mexico (Semar). According to El Universal newspaper, the alleged narco-trafficker died in Colonia Lindavista last night during a exchange of shoots. (Credit Image: © Ulises Ruiz Basurto/EFE via ZUMA Press)

The first two months of the year saw historic levels of violence in 12 states, where homicide numbers were the highest recorded since the Interior Secretariat, or Segob, began keeping data.

Topping the list was Guerrero with 340 intentional homicides followed by Baja California with 254, Michoacán with 229 and Veracruz with 211.

Guanajuato followed with 179, Mexico City 170, Morelos 113, Colima 103, Zacatecas 81, Baja California Sur 75, Querétaro 23 and Yucatán 14. The figures were even higher than those recorded during 2010 and 2011, the worst years for violence in the war on drugs.

In 17 of the remaining states, while historic levels have yet to be reached, the data showed a significant increase nonetheless.

In Chihuahua, where the federal government admitted yesterday that things have gone awry, homicides have risen from 141 in the first two months of 2016 to 266 this year. Interior Secretary Miguel Ángel Osorio Chong assured a gathering of businesspeople that the situation will not be allowed to worsen.

The data, compiled by the Executive Secretariat of the National Public Security System, or SESNSP, also identified San Luis Potosí and Tabasco as hot spots: the number of homicides in the first leapt from 35 to 72 in one year; in the second they soared from 30 in 2016 to 62 this year.

Colima leads the way in terms of the murder rate per 100,000 inhabitants with 13.77 followed by Guerrero with 9.43 and Baja California Sur with 9.26.

Only three states reported lower homicide figures for January and February: Nuevo León, Campeche and the State of México.