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Narco wars spill more blood in Tijuana

But no slow down in foreign investment

Zeta headline “Wanted Cops for Murder” - Image by Matthew Suárez
Zeta headline “Wanted Cops for Murder”

“Lo más seguro mataron a alguien” ("probably someone got shot"), I exclaimed to my girlfriend as I was driving down Calle Cuarta (4th Street) in downtown Tijuana on the afternoon of February 15. Yellow tape blocked my way and a motorcycle cop directed traffic. 

Blood on the corner of 4th and Revolución

Later that night, walking to Insurgente's tap room for a beer, I saw a pool of blood on the corner of 4th Street and Avenida Revolución, a touristy spot. Three unlit candles and a plastic water bottle were placed on the corner. Across the street, a LizardBear mascot of the company TaskUs danced happily enticing people to enter the brewery to be recruited to work for a call center. A heavy police force and the Mexican army covered the perimeter, but other than that, the city acted like nothing happened. The city continues desensitized to violence.

“I saw the killer run down the street,” said the bartender in Insurgente. “A nearby cop, instead of chasing the suspect, stayed with the dying body and did nothing but call other cops.” The victim died on the scene. 

Tijuana news reported that the suspect was not apprehended. Most crimes go unsolved.

Despite heavy police and army presence throughout the city, murders happen everywhere in broad daylight. It is common to see army trucks parading like Call of Duty cosplayers with heavy machine guns mounted. 

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LizardBear, mascot of the company TaskUs

Baja California reported more than 400 homicides in the first two months of 2024. Of those, 325 were in Tijuana.

“We are having a violent start of the year,” says Roberto Quijano, president of Consejo del Ciudadano de Seguridad del Estado de Baja California (Baja's state’s safety council). “Other crimes are increasing like stolen vehicles, home and business burglary. Other crimes like fraud and threats have been increasing exponentially," says a story on Uniradio.

The total of homicides in the state in 2023 was 2,455, of those 1,855 were in Tijuana, 197 fewer than in 2022. Downtown Tijuana was responsible for 169 of those. As usual, the violence is attributed to narco wars fighting over turf.

It is not only violence; the rest of the city continues to be a mess. The headline on the newspaper Zeta for the last week of March reads “Wanted Cops for Murder.” The subhead reads “More Uncoordinated Road Construction Chokes Alternative Routes.” The city is affected by crumbling bridges, abandoned projects, incomplete infrastructure, and a corrupt government that funnels money to shady contractors. 

Despite this, foreign investment hasn't stopped; more than $2.6 billion USD was invested in 2023 in new and old Baja businesses, an 18 percent increase from 2022. The city’s economy and population are on steady growth.

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Zeta headline “Wanted Cops for Murder” - Image by Matthew Suárez
Zeta headline “Wanted Cops for Murder”

“Lo más seguro mataron a alguien” ("probably someone got shot"), I exclaimed to my girlfriend as I was driving down Calle Cuarta (4th Street) in downtown Tijuana on the afternoon of February 15. Yellow tape blocked my way and a motorcycle cop directed traffic. 

Blood on the corner of 4th and Revolución

Later that night, walking to Insurgente's tap room for a beer, I saw a pool of blood on the corner of 4th Street and Avenida Revolución, a touristy spot. Three unlit candles and a plastic water bottle were placed on the corner. Across the street, a LizardBear mascot of the company TaskUs danced happily enticing people to enter the brewery to be recruited to work for a call center. A heavy police force and the Mexican army covered the perimeter, but other than that, the city acted like nothing happened. The city continues desensitized to violence.

“I saw the killer run down the street,” said the bartender in Insurgente. “A nearby cop, instead of chasing the suspect, stayed with the dying body and did nothing but call other cops.” The victim died on the scene. 

Tijuana news reported that the suspect was not apprehended. Most crimes go unsolved.

Despite heavy police and army presence throughout the city, murders happen everywhere in broad daylight. It is common to see army trucks parading like Call of Duty cosplayers with heavy machine guns mounted. 

Sponsored
Sponsored
LizardBear, mascot of the company TaskUs

Baja California reported more than 400 homicides in the first two months of 2024. Of those, 325 were in Tijuana.

“We are having a violent start of the year,” says Roberto Quijano, president of Consejo del Ciudadano de Seguridad del Estado de Baja California (Baja's state’s safety council). “Other crimes are increasing like stolen vehicles, home and business burglary. Other crimes like fraud and threats have been increasing exponentially," says a story on Uniradio.

The total of homicides in the state in 2023 was 2,455, of those 1,855 were in Tijuana, 197 fewer than in 2022. Downtown Tijuana was responsible for 169 of those. As usual, the violence is attributed to narco wars fighting over turf.

It is not only violence; the rest of the city continues to be a mess. The headline on the newspaper Zeta for the last week of March reads “Wanted Cops for Murder.” The subhead reads “More Uncoordinated Road Construction Chokes Alternative Routes.” The city is affected by crumbling bridges, abandoned projects, incomplete infrastructure, and a corrupt government that funnels money to shady contractors. 

Despite this, foreign investment hasn't stopped; more than $2.6 billion USD was invested in 2023 in new and old Baja businesses, an 18 percent increase from 2022. The city’s economy and population are on steady growth.

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