Some of Mexico City’s most violent neighborhoods haven’t recorded a single murder in 2021, and others have seen an 80% decline in annual terms.
The borough of Gustavo A. Madero hasn’t seen a homicide this year in the neighborhoods of Candelaria Ticomán, San Bartolo Atepehuacan, Gabriel Hernández, despite being historically violent areas.
The Iztapalapa neighborhoods of Desarrollo Urbano Quetzalcóatl and Ejército de Oriente only registered five homicides from January through September this year: the same period last year saw a total of 51 murders in the five areas.
One major innovation is the use of WhatsApp as an official communication channel for citizens to make criminal complaints. The newspaper Milenio reported that better use of surveillance cameras and improved coordination with México state authorities had also helped transform the security situation.
Additional hands-on measures have played a role. In Candelaria Ticomán security checkpoints were introduced to search suspicious vehicles leaving and entering the neighborhood and in Ejército de Oriente round the clock patrols are in place.
The Mexico City Security Ministry representative for Candelaria Ticomán, Rogelio Albiter, said locals had supported the new measures. “People received them well. They got used to it little by little … no complaints are made by the neighbors,” he said.
Mexico City Police Chief Omar Garcia Harfuch said on November 18 that crime had fallen by 46% in the capital from October 2020 through September 2021. Extortion, he added, fell 82% while homicides fell 32%.
With reports from Milenio