EL PASO, Texas (Border Report) – Guerrero state authorities are investigating who killed and dismembered seven people and left an SUV with their severed heads in front of a church in Chilpancingo this past weekend.
Local news reports said most of the victims are members of a family missing since June 9. They also said handwritten signs were found at the scene near San Mateo church threatening the mayor of the state capital of Chilpancingo and a second city official. The signs, which can be seen on social media postings, also threatened alleged leaders of local criminal groups.
“Evidence was found at the scene with relevant information that will be analyzed and used in the investigation,” the Guerrero Attorney General’s Office said in a statement. The agency did not specifically address the alleged threats against the public officials but said, “(We) will not tolerate acts of corruption from public servants within or outside this institution.”
The AG’s Office has not formally identified the victims, but Mexican news reports said members of the missing family – a man and his wife, their teenage son and a young woman – were among the victims. Just a week earlier, friends and relatives of the Peralta Catalan family held a march demanding they were found. The family disappeared on a drive from Chilpancingo to Acapulpo, according to the demonstrators.
Days prior to the bodies being found, a video appeared on social media in which the family and three men are questioned, their hands tied behind their backs, by their captors.
The video shared by the reputable Milenio news portal shows the teenage son “confessing” to being a hitman for a group at war with the Ardillas drug gang. Under obvious duress and at times coached by one of his captors, the young man states he participated on the murder of a journalist and of a doctor who cared for injured members of the Ardillas.
The father, mother and girlfriend “confess” in the video to supporting their loved one.
Guerrero for the past four years has been a battleground for drug gangs including Jalisco New Generation Cartel (CJNG) and Familia Michoacana, according to international security analysts.
Chilpancingo is 70 miles northeast of the popular tourist resort of Acapulco.