Surveillance footage has emerged of two gunmen opening fire on a Playa Del Carmen restaurant on Monday, killing one and injuring 11.
The suspects appeared on the surveillance cameras walking in the middle of the street as cars sped by moments before she rushed towards the sidewalk and started firing their weapons.
Both of the assailants first unleashed their bullets towards the interior seating area of Cerveceria Chapultepec which is one of countless restaurants in the popular tourist resort.
One of the attackers subsequently paused for a second and pulled the trigger at a group of diners that were sitting at the tables outside the eatery.
Both men then ran down the street and disappeared from the camera’s view. None of the victims have been identified and it remains unclear if any were tourists.
Among the injured were six women and five men.
Quintana Roo State Attorney General said the attack was connected to a criminal organization seeking extortion payments from business owners.
WARNING GRAPHIC CONTENT
CCTV camera captures the frightening moment two men opened fired at restaurant patrons in the Mexican resort town of Playa del Carmen on Monday night
The two suspects (pictured to the right of the vehicle) wanted for killing a person and injuring 11 others at a restaurant in Playa del Carmen were spotted by a surveillance camera walking in the middle of a street seconds before unleashing their attack
Restaurant patrons (pictured) tend to a victim of a shooting that left one person dead and 11 wounded on Monday night in the Mexican resort city of Playa del Carmen
Several victims could be seen on the video sprawled out on the pavement as they moved in agony while several others were motionless.
A man and a woman, who were about to enter a vehicle parked a few feet away from the gunmen, were fortunate enough not to have gotten struck by the hail of bullets.
The woman crouched on the side of the car while the man jumped inside the vehicle and closed the door.
The Attorney General’s office in the Mexican state of Quintana Roo said the horrifying attack at the restaurant was directly connected to a criminal organization that was seeking a ‘piso’ fee, which in English means extortion payments, from a business owner.
Cerveceria Chapultepec is located just blocks away from five major resorts while other top rated all-inclusive hotels are nestled to the south off the shores of the Caribbean Sea.
Playa del Carmen, located in the municipality of Solidaridad, is one of Mexico’s top destinations for international tourists despite being one of the country’s most dangerous towns.
According to Mexican outlet La Jornada, as of Monday night, Playa del Carmen had reported 86 assassinations in 2019.
While one of the gunmen (top center left) points his weapon inside the restaurant, the other (top center right) aims it at the patrons sitting outside the eatery before firing
A paramedic in Playa del Carmen places a shooting victim inside an ambulance after two men allegedly shot up a restaurant in what government officials said was related to a criminal organization seeking extortion payment
On Tuesday night, the senseless attack drove Carlos Joaquín González, the governor of Quintana Roo, to announce that the government would be temporarily assuming security control in Solidaridad.
News of the tactical plan took the mayor by surprise.
Laura Beristain Navarrete called the governor’s decision a ‘coup’ and vowed to fight back to regain control of her city’s police force.
‘We are not going to allow the interests of a few to usurp the constitutional responsibilities by planting terror and pretending to assume functions that do not correspond to them,’ Beristain Navarrete said, according to Mexican outlet XEU Noticias.
Government statistics for the first quarter of 2019 were released in late April and revealed that homicides in the municipality of Solidaridad, where Playa del Carmen is located, increased six times in contrast with the same period last year.
On Thursday morning, police responded to a shooting in the parking lot of a local bar that claimed the life of a local journalist, Francisco Romero.
His last assignment was covering Monday night’s shooting.
There were 55 homicides in the city from January to March, compared with nine in the first three months of 2018.
In April, the United States Department of State issued a travel advisory for American travelers visiting Mexico but excluded Quintana Roo.
A surveillance camera recorded the moment the suspected attackers fled the Playa del Carmen restaurant after leaving one person dead and 11 injured
Authorities block out access to a restaurant in the tourist-favorite city of Playa del Carmen where at least 12 people were shot, including one who died
The warning cautioned travelers to stay away from the states of Colima, Guerrero, Michoacán and Sinaloa, which have high crime rates. Tourists were also told to be mindful of the crime and kidnapping that has engulfed the state of Tamaulipas.
The restaurant is located on a section of the strip that is packed with restaurants, shops and sightseeing attractions, including a museum honoring Mexican artist, Frida Kahlo.
Images rapidly shared on social media showed survivors being tended to by their friends and loved ones before ambulances ushered them away.
The coastal town of Playa del Carmen, a top destination for tourists visiting Mexico’s Caribbean coast, is located in the municipality of Solidaridad and south of Cancun
The wounded were taken to area hospitals for treatment.
The names of the victims were withheld by law enforcement authorities investigating the frightening attack.
Cancun, another top destination spot located in the northeastern part of Quintana Roo, has been far more dangerous than Playa del Carmen.
Through the first four months and a half of 2019, there have been 159 murders tallied, four that claimed the lives of police officers.
The government responded with a tactical plan to combat crime by increasing the presence of the police in Cancun and Playa del Carmen, but it still has not been enough to quell the terror.
The coastal town of Playa del Carmen is located in the municipality of Solidaridad.
The city is also home to Xcaret, the Mayan archaeological site. No arrests have been reported.