Mayor Gisela Mota was sworn in as the mayor of Temixco on Friday. On Saturday, members of Mexico’s organized crime entered her home, beat her severely, and shot her in the head. During her inauguration speech on Friday, Mota had promised to free her town from organized crime.
As reported by Mexico News Daily on January 2, Mota was part of the left-leaning Democratic Revolutionary Party in Mexico and “was a strong and courageous woman who had declared on taking office that her fight against crime would be ‘head-on and direct’.”
After Friday’s courageous start as the mayor of Temixco in the state of Morelos, 33-year-old Gisela Mota Ocampo returned to her home in Pueblo Viejo, an about two-hour drive from Mexico City. Around 7 a.m. on Saturday, a group of armed assailants entered her home, beat the newly-sworn in mayor, and started firing – killing Mota and two others in the home.
“After her killing, local media reported that Mota’s bodyguards and police gave chase and a shootout ensued, during which two people were killed and three arrested. Bulletproof vests, balaclavas, a 9mm pistol, an Uzi rifle and various types of ammunition were recovered from the car they were traveling in, according to a statement from the local prosecutor’s office.”
“Temixco lies on the outskirts of the capital of Morelos, Cuernavaca, which has seen high levels of drug-related violence, kidnappings and extortion in recent years,” reports the Los Angeles Times.
“On Sunday, the Mexican news website SinEmbargo reported that one of three suspects detained after the shooting told authorities that the perpetrators were paid 500,000 Mexican pesos — about $29,000 — to kill Mota. The newspaper El Universal said the killing was the work of Los Rojos (‘the Reds’) drug gang, which has been engaged in a bloody battle for territory against rival groups in the neighboring state of Guerrero.”
According to the Association of Local Mexican Authorities, Mayor Gisela Mota’s death brings the number of local elected officials killed in Mexico in the last decade to nearly 100. The governor of the state of Morelos, Graco Ramirez, announced three days of official mourning for Mota.
During Sunday’s mass for Mota, Roman Catholic Bishop Ramon Castro said “I hope and pray to God that Gisela’s death helps to make us all more conscious. I’m no expert, but the only thing I see is that various communities here are in the hands of organized crime — I’ve been saying that for a while, and begging, and no one has been able to do anything.”