Amid declining violence in Sonora, major port city is a troubling outlier
When it comes to violence in Sonora, the trend is now a modest but positive one. However, there are several troubling outliers.
Breaking a longstanding streak of back-to-back murder records, Sonora saw a nearly 10% year-to-year drop in 2022. That welcome news is tempered by astonishing levels of violence — sometimes quite public and spectacular — in the port municipality of Guaymas, which is near the popular beach resort of San Carlos.
In December alone, there were 50 murder cases, more than all of 2018 combined, and murders surged nearly 50% from the already high 2021 figures.
Marco Antonio Paz, a spokesperson for the state citizens security committee, told KJZZ News that a struggle between criminal groups is the key underlying factor.
But rather than fighting for control of the local drug market, he suggested groups may be contending for the port itself, which enables access to materials necessary for lucrative meth and fentanyl manufacture.