Saturday, June 15, 2024

2 arrested, 2 resign in the aftermath of Ayotzinapa student death

Two of three state police officers allegedly involved in the murder of a student in Chilpancingo, Guerrero, last Thursday are now in custody.

A third officer escaped state government facilities on Monday — allegedly with the assistance of authorities. The fugitive suspect, identified as David “N,” is accused of shooting and killing Ayotzinapa Rural Teachers’ College student Yanqui Khotan Gómez Peralta in the state capital.

The Guerrero Public Security Ministry (SSP) said Wednesday night that two other officers “involved in the events” had been handed over to the Federal Attorney General’s Office (FGR), which is investigating the death of Gómez, who was a student at the school attended by 43 young men who were abducted and presumably murdered in 2014.

The officers handed themselves into authorities, according to Filiberto Velázquez, a priest and director of a human rights center in Chilpancingo. The SSP said that a search for the third suspect is ongoing.

President Andrés Manuel López Obrador said Monday that Gómez and another student with him at the time of his death “did not shoot” at police — as the SSP said in a statement last week — and therefore “there was an abuse of authority” on the part of officers.

Meanwhile, Guerrero Governor Evelyn Salgado announced Thursday that state Interior Minister Ludwig Marcial Reynoso and Security Minister Rolando Solano Rivera had resigned.

AMLO at morning press conference
The president told reporters on Monday that there had been an “abuse of authority” in the shooting of Gómez. (Cuartoscuro)

Gómez’s mother and Ayotzinapa students had called for the dismissal of the two men for allegedly fabricating the SSP’s version of events that Gómez and the other student were armed and had drugs in the vehicle in which they were traveling when police shot at them.

Pressure on the two ministers, and the governor, only grew after the police officer vanished on Monday. They have also faced criticism for a recent spike in violence in Guerrero.

Salgado said Thursday that she would ask state Attorney General Sandra Luz Valdovinos to resign.

Valdovinos has been accused of “irresponsibility as a public servant for not calling on the state police officers who abused their power to give evidence,” the El Universal newspaper reported.

Police patrol truck on fire in Chilpancingo
A police patrol vehicle was set on fire by protesters in Chilpancingo after the death of the student. (Cuartoscuro)

Gómez’s death occurred a day after Ayotzinapa students used a pickup truck to break open wooden doors at the National Palace while protesting the abduction and presumed murder of the 43 students in 2014.

López Obrador has pledged since the beginning of his government that the case would be resolved before he leaves office, but it appears probable that will not be the case as he now has just 6 1/2 months left in his six-year term.

Almost a decade after the students disappeared no one has been convicted of the crime and the case remains shrouded in mystery, although a government report published last September outlines three “possible reasons” for the abduction of the young men.

With reports from El Sol de Acapulco and El Universal 

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