At least five people are believed to have been killed in a mass shooting at a gay bar in Mexico, reports have emerged. Three gunmen entered La Madame, a LGBTI bar in Xalapa, and carried out a mass shooting on 22 May.
In a statement by the state prosecutor, it said five people were killed, 14 injured, of which 12 have been discharged from hospital. However, contradictory reports claim there were many more deaths.
Regeneración reports a witness who entered the bar at the time of the shooting says he took refuge in a cupboard as soon as he heard the shootings. He says three males with weapons entered the bar, and soon started massacring people. He could hear screams.
Photos are said to show at least seven killed.
Luis Donaldo Rivera Calderon was one of the victims named by the media. A promising athlete and student, he had gone to the bar with his uncle Luis Manuel Rivera Aguilar.
‘They opened the doors violently and drew their guns. There were shouts,’ the uncle told local media. ‘They had no mercy. Bullets ricocheted everywhere. The white tiles were stained red. Those who wanted to escape slipped in puddles of blood.’
‘It was a slaughterhouse,’ he added.
A 24-year-old employee told reporters at El Noreste she witnessed an armed group enter the bar and shot into a crowd of more than 200 people. She said there were at least 15 dead and multiple wounded, who were taken to various hospitals.
Police said they launched a search for the gunmen, implementing ‘special security protocols for several hours’, but no arrests were made.
Zúniga Martínez, the mayor of Xalapa, has said La Madame will be shut down after it appears one of the injured victims was a 15-year-old girl.
The reports only emerged in English-speaking reports after 49 people were shot dead at LGBTI nightclub Pulse in Orlando, Florida on Sunday (12 June).
It has been suggested authorities and media had attempted to downplay the event.