photo by Sergio Ortiz/Frontera
A taco vendor was among the 1000 people murdered (so far) this year in Tijuana.
On Sunday, August 27th, a young man wearing a black cap, black shirt, and black jeans walked into a small coffee shop located in Colonia Buena Vista and pointed a gun at a customer who sat texting near the entrance. The man with the gun instructed him to give him his belongings, then pointed the gun at four other customers who were dressed in business attire and carried laptop bags. They all relinquished their belongings. The barista behind the counter then ceded to the demand that he empty the cash register.
The perpetrator had time to rummage through the bags in a calm manner and a minute later he was out the door with all the customers’ belongings and the cash from the register. The video was shared on social media by Uniradio Noticias.
Cafe Gazzo, where the robbery occurred, is located less than a mile away from La Veinte de Noviembre, the municipal penitentiary for minor offenses. On the morning of August 8th, in the same neighborhood, a 45-year-old taco vendor was shot in front of his customers by a man dressed in black.
Both crimes are unsolved.
Later on August 27, at around 10:00 p.m., two young men who witnesses say were between 18 and 24 years old, assaulted and robbed La Espadaña, a well known and highly regarded traditional Mexican restaurant. They took 80,000 pesos in cash from the register (about $4705) and robbed all the belongings from the customers.
La Espadaña is located in the restaurant sector of Zona Río. Restaurants have private security, and police headquarters is located five blocks away. Zona Río and downtown are part of what the city calls zona blindada, the areas with most security, yet crime is reported daily by the dozens.
The people of Mexico are living through one of the country's most violent years, and Tijuana's head count surpasses all regions. The city already broke the record for most murders in a year — over 1000 so far, a milestone reported on August 21.
My upstairs neighbor warned me two weeks ago that they caught someone climbing the balconies of our building at around 8 p.m. They scared the perpetrator away while he was trying to enter one of the empty apartments. My neighbors from across the street had their bicycles stolen from their balcony. They live in an apartment on top of an HSBC bank in a three-story building with security cameras.