Nine women and children killed after Mexican drug cartel opens fire at Mormon family on their way to a wedding
The victims belonged to a Mormon community and were traveling to another community to attend a wedding in a convoy of three vehicles, say reports. Thirteen members of La Mora, which is a part of the Mormon church also went missing after the gun attack.
At least nine US citizens, including infants, have been shot and killed in an attack by cartel gunmen, according to Arizona Central. Associated Press reported that relatives of the family said that the ambush killed four children as they were traveling from Bavispe to a wedding in LaBaron, Chihuahua. Three other children suffered bullet wounds, said Lafe Langford Jr., a relative of some of the victims.
The victims belonged to a Mormon community and were traveling to another community to attend a wedding in a convoy of three vehicles, say reports. They were attacked on the way and one of the vehicles caught fire and exploded.
Reports say police suspect the attack could be a case of mistaken identity. Thirteen members of La Mora, which is a part of the Mormon church also went missing after the gun attack, a relative told the Associated Press. This relative, whose identity has not been revealed said that he found the SUV that carried his nephew's wife and her four kids aged 8, 10 and twins who were 6 months old - the car was burned severely and had bullet holes. The authorities are trying to locate the missing members.
Many of the church's members have dual citizenship in the US and Mexico. A relative named Julian LeBaron told on his Facebook page that the woman who died was named Rhonita Maria LeBaron. The two other SUVs that were a part of the convoy are still missing along with the members in them.
The bodies of Dawna Ray Langford, 43, and Christina Marie Langford, 31, were found later Monday, Lafe Langford Jr. said. The bodies of two of Dawna Ray Langford’s children, Trevor, 11, and Rogan, 3, also were recovered Monday reports The Salt Lake Tribune.
A third relative named Jhon LeBron also said that the 7-month-old child of his aunt Christina, Faith, had been found alive on the back of the car. He added, "My aunt Dawnas son Devon hid some of his shot and wounded siblings in the bushes and ran all the way back to town for help".
The gunmen are believed to be from the drug cartel in Chihuahua. According to a local newspaper El Diario, the attack took place at Rancho La Mora on the borders between Sonora and Chihuahua. The car exploded when a bullet hit the gas tank, it reported. The community has lived in Bavispe for more than 40 years.