BY Press Gazette

Mexican journalist shot dead by motorbike assassins is eighth killed in country so far this year

A Mexican journalist has been shot dead by two assassins on motorbikes.

The 45-year-old victim, Rodolfo Garcia Gonzalez, worked regularly with two local newspapers and specialised in photographing social events and local temples.

The local man was found dead in the town of Valle de Santiago in the central Mexican state of Guanajuato on Sunday.

According to official reports, the police received a call at around 7pm from residents who reported the shooting.

According to witnesses, Garcia Gonzalez was on his moped when he was attacked by two armed men on scooters who opened fire on him in the street.

Despite receiving several bullet wounds, he reportedly managed to drive off on his moped, but eventually fell off onto the road.

Police say they are investigating the case, but currently have no suspects for the murder.

A spokesperson for Diario 7, one of the local papers the journalist and photographer worked with, said: “This has nothing to do with drugs or stealing fuel”, describing the victim as a “well known” man who focused on social events.

Guanajunto is one of the most dangerous states in Mexico. In June alone there were 265 reported murders, giving it a murder rate of 53 per 100,000 inhabitants, around double the national average.

This represents a doubling of the number of victims since 2017, a phenomenon which is attributed to the rise in organised fuel robberies attributed to gangs known as huacicoleros.

Mexico is officially the most dangerous country in Latin America for journalists. In 2017, 12 journalists were murdered in the country and eight have been killed so far this year.

The organisation Reporters Without Borders claims there have been 986 attacks on journalists in Mexico since 2012.