The scene in Playa del Carmen after this morning's shooting. The scene in Playa del Carmen after this morning's shooting.

5 killed in shooting at music festival in Playa

15 wounded in gunfire at BPM festival in Playa del Carmen nightclub

At least five people are dead and more than 15 wounded after a shooting early this morning at a Playa del Carmen nightclub.


Early reports say a lone shooter opened fire at about 2:00am at the Blue Parrot during the final night of the BPM electronic music festival.

The club was packed, according to one witness with the “music in full swing” when shots were heard.

Video footage published on social media shows a chaotic scene outside the club as people fled.

“We have five dead, another in serious condition and various wounded . . . .” said Mayor Cristina Torre in an interview this morning.

She said there were two versions of what happened: one was that a person did not want to pay the cover charge to enter the bar and began shooting. The second was that the gunfire arose from a confrontation.

A police spokesman said there was a disagreement among some people inside the club and the shooting began when security guards tried to contain the dispute, the Associated Press reported. Four people were said to have been arrested.


BPM Festival organizers said in a statement on their Facebook page that a lone shooter was responsible.

“It is with great sadness to share that police have confirmed reports of a lone shooter outside the Blue Parrot nightclub in Playa Del Carmen earlier today, which resulted in four fatalities and twelve injured. The violence began on 12th street in front of the club and three members of the BPM security team were among those whose lives were lost while trying to protect patrons inside the venue.

“The BPM Festival has been working closely with the local authorities . . . throughout the festival to ensure public safety and security for all visitors. We are overcome with grief over this senseless act of violence and we are cooperating fully with local law enforcement and government officials as they continue their investigation.”

A Scottish DJ posted a warning on Twitter just after 2:00am, urging people to stay in their hotel rooms. “Someone has come into the club in Playa del Carmen and opened fire. Four to five dead and many wounded.”

A little later he tweeted: “This is a very sad situation. Trying to get my head around it still. Thoughts and condolence to all affected.”

The BPM Festival is a 10-day gathering of music industry professionals that was created in 2008. Held annually in Playa del Carmen, it draws as many as 70,000 people, according to information published on Wikipedia. BPM stands for “bartenders, promoters, musicians.”

Source: NBC News (en), Milenio (sp)

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  • Henry Wilson

    a surprising occurrence. playa del carmen has always been thought of as a smaller and safer alternative to cancun. perhaps that reputation is changing.

  • Mike S

    Gun’s and gun violence in MX was rare 35 years ago. Since then, the proliferation of organized drug cartels satisfying the lucrative and endless demand from gringos in the US has mushroomed. . Despite Mexican laws against guns, Mx has seen a vast flood of guns move south from our gun crazed NRA society where guns are about as hard to acquire as a pair of socks. Although this incident was not drug gang related, once a flood of guns are loose in a poorer society, the damage is almost permanent. Welcome to the new reality of settling disputes. This type of stuff happens weekly in the US:

    • TioDon

      The NRA, really? You’re as dumb as a pair of socks.

      • Mike S

        The NRA is no longer about gun safety and hunting. Its leadership has evolved into a gun manufacturer’s lobby that spreads fear and right-wing political dogma. 85% of Americans want some level of background checks for gun purchases but congress is so afraid of their lobby nothing can get passed. Their answer to every mass shooting is more guns. And yes the cartels know they can get all the guns they need from US gun runners. There are now 320 million guns floating around the civilian population in the US. More Americans have been killed by guns than in all our wars combined.. Mexico is definitely affected by this. Maybe it is you who is in denial and dumber than a pair of socks.

        • TioDon

          Wow, I apologize to the socks…….you make them look like geniuses. I notice you didn’t mention Fast and Furious made famous by your idol, Obuckwheat…hahahaha…..I think Mexico should implement background checks to keep left wing loony birds like you out to Mexico….

  • Güerito

    It hasn’t been reported much by Mexican or international media, but the state of Quintana Roo is undergoing a wave of extortions on the part of organized crime. The extortion business is said to be fought over by Los Zetas, The Gulf Cartel, and the Cartel New Generation from Jalisco.

    Playa del Carmen, in particular, is said to be very hard hit, with reports that all businesses, legal and illegal, have been threatened or are paying extortion fees to one of the three cartels above. 100 businesses are reported to have closed in Playa del Carmen in the last year for this reason.

    Having said that, a single gunman attack like this is a very unusual way to enforce a failure to pay extortion. More often it would be a commando of several heavily armed men, or arson performed after hours.

    We’ll have to wait for more details. Some reports say four men were detained.

  • Jumex

    This is going to hurt the cash cow of tourism in Quintana Roo.

    Many gringos have had the impression that Mexico has become dangerous but… Cancun and surrounding areas are “safe”.
    There goes that thought.

  • Kevin Healey

    I will still go to QRoo. Coming from America where this could happen anywhere – makes no sense to not go. If good people stop going then bad people will fill the void.

  • Timothy Wood

    Having lived in Cancun for 10 years, 5 years ago, it is and I’m positive, will always be dangerous, especially if you are American. Make no mistake about it, the police will stop you in broad daylight, demand ridicious amounts of cash, or demand you use a credit/debit card for said cash. If you refuse, you’ll go to ‘ceresa’ (mex jail) for 3 days, automatically. You’ll never see a judge or be formally be charged. You’ll just sit there until they let you go. And, by the way, the phone doesnt work for your phone call either. You’re better off staying up north where you have rights and your rights are enforced. Know a guy (from Holland) who got into an argument with a mex in one of the nightclubs in Cancun, cops came, took the guy from Holland to jail. Never faced a judge, was never charged, but he did 7 years in the jail. Finally, his parents paid enough to get him freed. The Mexican guy, who started the argument originally, was a nephew to a politician in Cancun. It is not safe in this country alone.