Courts & Crime

October was deadliest month yet for Mexico's Ciudad Juarez

Good riddance to October, which was the bloodiest month in modern history for Ciudad Juarez, the border city across from El Paso, Texas.

Gunmen killed 352 people in Juarez in October.

Compare that to the 63 NATO troops killed in Afghanistan last month.

More people were killed in Ciudad Juarez in October than in entire years earlier in the decade. According to a tally kept by the city's El Diario newspaper, there were 186 murders in the entire year of 2003, 204 in 2004, 227 in 2005, 253 in 2006 and 320 in 2007.

Several extraordinary mass killings occurred in Juarez last month, most notably the Oct. 22 slaughter of 14 young people at a birthday party in the Horizontes del Sur district of the city. The victims were aged 13 to 30, and included six women. Fifteen other people were wounded.

As Diario noted Monday, last month’s death toll included 48 women, among them housewives, young mothers, female cops, students and young girls.

In Juarez and the surrounding area, which suffered such a spate of killings of women in the 1990s that the term feminicide was commonly used, 272 women have been killed so far this year. The total since 1993 is 949 women.

Back to October’s death toll: It’s been climbing steadily all year. In January, there were 227 murders, 163 in February, 240 in March, 203 in April, 262 in May, 313 in June, 291 in July, 339 in August, 288 in September.

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