Municipal Police Chief Arrested Over Mexican Massacre of 9 Americans

Reuters
By Reuters
December 27, 2019World News
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Municipal Police Chief Arrested Over Mexican Massacre of 9 Americans
Howard Miller, the man pictured here in the black shirt, survived the attack, as did the three children with blurred faces. (Family Handout)

MEXICO CITY—Mexican authorities have arrested a municipal police chief for his suspected links to the killing of three women and six children of U.S.–Mexican origin in northern Mexico last month, local media and an official said on Friday.

Suspected drug cartel hitmen shot dead the nine women and children in Sonora state on Nov. 4, sparking outrage in Mexico and the United States.

mormon attack victims
This photo shows Howard Jackob Miller, Jr., Rhonita Maria Miller, infant twins Titus Alvin Miller and Tiana Griciel Miller, and Krystal Bellaine Miller, who all died in the attack. Howard Miller, the adult male pictured, is alive and is not believed to have been present at the attack. (Courtesy of Jhon LeBaron)

Several Mexican media outlets reported that law enforcement agents arrested Fidel Alejandro Villegas, police chief of the municipality of Janos, which lies in the neighboring state of Chihuahua, on suspicion of involvement in the crime. The reports said he is suspected of having ties to organized crime, but details of his alleged role were not clear.

A federal official, speaking on condition of anonymity, confirmed the arrest of Villegas, which follows the detention of other suspects earlier in the investigation.

Mexican officials believe the women and children were killed after becoming caught up in a dispute between local drug cartels battling for control of the area.

burned-out vehicle from cartel ambush
This combination of frames from Nov. 4, 2019, video by Kenny Miller and posted on the Twitter account of Alex LeBaron shows two views of a burned-out vehicle that was being used by some members of the LeBaron family as they were driving in a convoy near the Sonora-Chihuahua border in Mexico. (Kenny Miller/Courtesy of Alex LeBaron via AP)

Under pressure from the Trump administration, Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador sought United States cooperation in the case, inviting the FBI to help in the investigation.

By Dave Graham

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