AP

Relatives say at least 9 US citizens killed in north Mexico

Nov 5, 2019, 5:52 AM | Updated: 5:52 am
FILE 
(Getty Image)...
FILE (Getty Image)
(Getty Image)

MEXICO CITY (AP) — Relatives say at least nine U.S. citizens, including four children, who live in a religious community in northern Mexico were killed in a shooting attack they suspect may have been a case of mistaken identity by drug cartel gunmen.

As many as 13 other members of La Mora — a decades-old settlement in Sonora state founded as part of an offshoot of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints — were missing after the attack on a convoy of three SUVs carrying community members, said a relative who asked not to be named for fear of reprisals.

The relative said he had located the burned-out, bullet-ridden SUV containing the remains of his nephew’s wife and her four children — twin 6-month old babies and two other children aged 8 and 10.

Authorities in Sonora state and the U.S. Embassy did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Mexico’s federal Department of Security and Citizens’ Protection said security forces were reinforced with National Guard, army and state police troops in the area following “the reports about disappearance and aggression against several people.” The troops were searching for the missing community members, believed to include 11 children or more.

Another relative, Julian LeBaron, said on his Facebook page the dead woman was Rhonita Maria LeBaron.

The first relative said a convoy of three vehicles had set out Monday from La Mora, about 70 miles (110 kilometers) south of Douglas, Arizona, but was attacked by cartel gunmen in a possible case of mistaken identity by gunmen. Many of the church’s members were born in Mexico and thus have dual citizenship.

While he said he found the first vehicle, the other two SUVs were missing along with their passengers.

Jhon LeBaron, another relative, posted on his Facebook page that his aunt and another woman were dead, which could bring the death toll to at least seven. He also posted that six of his aunt’s children had been left abandoned but alive on a roadside.

It would not be the first time that members of the break-away church had been attacked in northern Mexico, where their forebears settled — often in Chihuahua state — decades ago.

In 2009, Benjamin LeBaron, an anti-crime activist who was related to those killed in Monday’s attack, was murdered in 2009 in neighboring Chihuahua state.

AP

FILE - House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., responds to reporters at the Capitol in Wash...
The Associated Press

McCarthy, Trump have ‘positive’ call despite Jan. 6 audio

House Republican leader Kevin McCarthy had a positive phone call with then President Donald Trump.
2 months ago
FILE - In this photo  provided by the Russian Defense Ministry Press Service, Russian missile cruis...
The Associated Press

Sailors’ families seek answers about Russian ship sinking

Families of Russian sailors aboard the Moskva are seeking information about the ship sinking.
2 months ago
President Joe Biden walks to board Air Force One, Thursday, April 21, 2022, at Andrews Air Force Ba...
The Associated Press

Biden announces heavy artillery, other weapons for Ukraine

President Joe Biden announced another $1,3 billion in military aide for Ukraine.
2 months ago
Ukrainian soldiers walk on a destroyed bridge in Irpin, on the outskirts of Kyiv, on Wednesday, Apr...
The Associated Press

‘Days or hours left’: Russia tightens the noose in Mariupol

Russian forces tighten their grip in the Ukrainian city of Mariupol.
2 months ago
A wind-driven wildfire burns at the edge of U.S. 89 on the outskirts of Flagstaff, Ariz., on Tuesda...
The Associated Press

Southwest wildfires force evacuations, tighten resources

An Arizona wildfire more than tripled in size on Wednesday as winds pushed flames through a neighborhood near Flagstaff.
2 months ago
Mask mandate...
MICHAEL BALSAMO and ZEKE MILLER Associated Press

Justice Dept. to appeal order voiding travel mask mandate

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Justice Department is filing an appeal seeking to overturn a judge’s order that voided the federal mask mandate on planes and trains and in travel hubs, officials said Wednesday. The notice came minutes after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention asked the Justice Department to appeal the decision handed down […]
2 months ago

Sponsored Articles

Prescription opioid...
Know Your Script

Prescription opioid misuse | How to protect your family from the opioid epidemic

Studies have shown that prescription opioid misuse has increased since COVID-19. So what do you need to know about these opioids?
...

Tax Tuesday: The Most Common Mistakes People Make When Filing Their Taxes

Fortunately, for most average earners, they will not end up owing overpayments received for the Child Tax Credit in 2021.
...

Tax Tuesday: How will last year’s child tax credits affect you?

Fortunately, for most average earners, they will not end up owing overpayments received for the Child Tax Credit in 2021.
...

Tax Tuesday: Key Information Before the Filing Deadline

Businesses can receive a credit of up to $5,000 per employee in 2020 and up to $21,000 per employee in 2021.
national heart month...
Intermountain Healthcare

National Heart Month: 5 Lifestyle Changes to Make Today to Keep You Heart Healthy

Heart disease is the leading cause of death for both men and women. One person dies every 36 seconds in the United States from cardiovascular disease
Joseph Smith Memorial Building...
Temple Square

The Joseph Smith Memorial Building is an icon of Salt Lake City | Why hosting an event at this beautiful location will make you a hero this year

Here's why hosting an event at the iconic Joseph Smith Memorial Building in downtown Salt Lake City will make you a hero this year.
Relatives say at least 9 US citizens killed in north Mexico