CULIACAN, Mexico – Two municipal police officers and a gunman were killed on Tuesday in a shootout in the western Mexican city of Culiacan, sources in the Sinaloa state Attorney General’s Office told EFE.
The incident occurred in the Alturas del Sur neighborhood of Culiacan, the state capital.
The two officers had just parted ways when assailants ambushed one of them near his home, prompting the second officer to return and engage the attackers.
Though the second officer managed to fatally shoot one of the attackers, both policemen died of their wounds.
Agents from the state AG Office, military personnel and members of the local, state, and federal police rushed to the scene and an army helicopter was deployed in the search for the assailants.
An additional 450 soldiers were deployed to Sinaloa last week as part of the response to a surge in violence after five drug kingpins escaped from a prison in the state.
The state’s top crime fighter, Gen. Genaro Robles Casillas, attributes the increase in violence to internecine struggles within the Sinaloa cartel, whose boss, Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman, is currently behind bars in the United States awaiting trial.