Why a 900% Spike in Murders in West Mexico State?

INSIGHT CRIME — The small west Mexico state of Colima has seen homicides rise by more than 900 percent compared to last year in a surge of violence that likely is linked to organized crime and has the potential to spill over into neighboring states. 

In April, there were 73 homicides in Colima, a 32.7 percent rise from March and a 942.9 percent rise from the April 2015 figure, according to figures published by Mexico’s National Public Security System (Sistema Nacional de Seguridad Pública — SNSP) (pdf).

Colima — which borders the states of Jalisco and Michoacán — saw a total of 206 homicides between January and April this year compared to 189 in the whole of 2015 (pdf). The wave of murders has given the Pacific coast state the highest murder rate in Mexico (pdf) for the first time since the SNSP began keeping homicide records in 1997.

The trend of rising violence in Colima began in late 2015. Over the course of 2016, murders have been increasing month on month at a rate of between 17 and 52 percent. Compared to the same period in 2015, month on month rates have shot up between 138.5 and 942.9 percent. 

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