According to Fox News Latino, beheadings are not uncommon in the drug war, but the death of this woman was the first known in Chihuahua.
The report also noted that three decapitated bodies were found last week in Tijuana, across the border from San Diego, hung by their feet from bridges.
The Texas National Guardsman killed Wednesday was one of three men shot in another incident. One of the men survived and was taken to a hospital. Details about the shooting are few, but Chihuahuan officials said the men were lying on the ground face up and had been shot multiple times.
Today's El Paso Times reports that Juarez residents found Ramirez and another man, Rafael Ramirez Reza, 42, dead in Colonia Revoluciòn Mexicana, according to the Chihuahua state attorney general's office. The Times also noted that Chihuahuan officials said a crime scene unit had found 18 empty casings from .45- and .223-caliber guns.
Col. Bill Meehan, a spokesman for the Texas National Guard, said a statement was likely to be issued Thursday. "It's really going to be a law enforcement investigation [The FBI is investigating the Guardsman's death]. It's really not something that we are discussing at this time," he told msnbc.com. He also said National Guardsmen are prohibited from going to Mexico, but the prohibition applies only to full-time staff and those on duty. The Guard advises all personnel to use extreme caution when entering Mexico. The article did not explain Ramirez’s presence in Juarez.
The violence was not confined to Juarez on Wednesday, as gun battles erupted in several areas of the country’s northern region. According to the MSNBC report, parents rushed to remove children from schools, and factories kept workers inside for their own safety, telling later shiftworkers to stay home, and canceling night shifts.
Juarez, once a pleasant leisure destination for Texans, has become one of the world’s deadliest cities. The El Paso Times article claims more than 6,700 people have been killed there in the last two years, 2,470 of them in 2010 — from gun battles, executions, carjackings and other forms of violence. Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott has observed that it is safer to walk the streets of Baghdad than those of Juarez.
Texans are livid and border residents frightened. The New American contacted the office of Texas Governor Rick Perry for comment on this and other border issues, but the call had not been returned at posting time.
Photo: Police inspect the bodies of 2 men that were shot dead in the northern border city of Ciudad Juarez, Mexico on Oct. 20, 2010. Authorities later identified one of the dead men as Jose Gil Hernandez Ramirez, 21, of El Paso, a Texas National Guardsman: AP Images