Mexico officials raise death toll from Culiacan battle to 13

Published October 24, 2019, 11:29 AM

by Rica Arevalo

By the Associated Press

MEXICO CITY — Authorities in the western Mexico state of Sinaloa have raised the death toll from last week’s gunfights with cartel members to 13.

This Oct. 18, 2019 photo shows a burnt out truck used by gunmen smoldering on an intersection, a day after street battles between gunmen and security forces in Culiacan, Mexico. Mexican security forces backed off an attempt to capture a son of imprisoned drug lord Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman after finding themselves outgunned in a ferocious shootout with cartel enforcers that left at least eight people dead and more than 20 wounded, authorities said. (AP Photo / Augusto Zurita / MANILA BULLETIN)
This Oct. 18, 2019 photo shows a burnt out truck used by gunmen smoldering on an intersection, a day after street battles between gunmen and security forces in Culiacan, Mexico. Mexican security forces backed off an attempt to capture a son of imprisoned drug lord Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman after finding themselves outgunned in a ferocious shootout with cartel enforcers that left at least eight people dead and more than 20 wounded, authorities said. (AP Photo / Augusto Zurita / MANILA BULLETIN)

The Sinaloa state prosecutor’s office said in a statement Wednesday that it had opened investigations into 13 deaths in the city of Culiacan. Previously, authorities had reported eight deaths, though locals had said there were more dead.

The statement did not explain the higher death toll resulting from events that unfolded a week ago.

Gunbattles broke out in Culiacan after police and soldiers attempted the capture of Ovidio Guzmán, a son of imprisoned drug lord Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán.

Officials eventually released Guzmán to avoid further bloodshed after Sinaloa cartel gunmen deployed in greater numbers.

The younger Guzmán is wanted on drug trafficking charges in the United States.

 
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