According to state officials, ten guards and four inmates were killed early Sunday when gunmen in armored vehicles attacked a state penitentiary in Ciudad Juarez across the border from El Paso, Texas.
Chihuahuan prosecutors said in a statement that around 7:00 a.m., several armored vehicles reached the jail and gunmen opened fire on the guards. In addition to those killed, 13 people were injured and at least 24 inmates escaped.
Later Sunday, Mexican soldiers and state police regained control of the prison. Prosecutors said their staff was investigating.
Chaotic scenes ensued as the relatives of some prisoners waited outside the compound for the New Year’s visits.
Inside, some rioting inmates set fire to various objects and clashed with prison guards, local media reported.
Four people were arrested, the prosecutor said, without specifying whether they were inmates or armed attackers.
Details of how the 24 escaped prisoners managed to escape were not known.
Shortly before the attack on the prison on Sunday, the city police were attacked and, after pursuing them, were able to arrest four men, according to the prosecutor’s statement. Police later killed two suspected gunmen who were traveling in an SUV.
Ciudad Juarez has been the scene of years of violent clashes between security forces and rival drug cartels Sinaloa and Juarez, which have left thousands dead over the past decade.
The prison itself has seen several outbreaks of fighting and rioting, including a bloody episode in March 2009 that left 20 people dead.
In August 2022, a clash between rival gangs killed three prisoners.
According to a February 2022 report by the State Human Rights Commission, more than 3,700 people are being held in the prison, exceeding the maximum capacity of 3,135.
Mexican prisons, particularly those run by the state, suffer from chronic overcrowding and violence, which has worsened in recent years due to conflicts between criminal groups.
AFP contributed to this report.
https://www.cbsnews.com/news/mexico-prison-attack-deaths-ciudad-juarez-near-us-border/ 10 of 14 guards killed in attack on Mexican jail near US border; 24 inmates escape