Tuesday, June 18, 2024

New Year’s celebratory gunfire blamed in death of Querétaro man

A man in Querétaro died from a stray bullet during New Year’s celebrations, but he wasn’t without blame: he was the one who fired the gun. 

The man, both perpetrator and victim, was firing into the air on his property in San Juan del Río, about 50 kilometers southeast of Querétaro city, when one bullet came back. His girlfriend phoned emergency services but he was pronounced dead by paramedics. 

In Querétaro firing a weapon into the air is not a crime, unlike in some other states, but there are sanctions for carrying a weapon, the newspaper El Diario de Querétaro reported. 

Injuries from stray bullets are a problem in Mexico, where firing a weapon skyward is a well known gesture of celebration. It caused injury and danger in many parts of the country during New Year’s celebrations.

In Matamoros, Tamaulipas, a three-month pregnant woman’s life was endangered on January 1 after a stray bullet fell through her roof and hit her in the stomach. The 27-year-old was resting in her bed when she was hit. 

Families in Culiacán, Sinaloa, had to take refuge in their homes for about 10 minutes to avoid getting hit during celebrations, despite a heavy police presence and pleas from Governor Rubén Rocha Moya to act responsibly, the newspaper El Universal reported.

However, security forces are not always the best antidote to the indiscriminate firing of weapons. In México state, a municipal police officer’s weapon was confiscated after photos spread of him shooting out of a window with his girlfriend to usher in the New Year.

With reports from AM, Soy 502, Hoy Tamaulipas and El Universal 

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