Mustang Island, Mexico, a ‘mustang’ island for men of honor
A Mexican city is bracing for a resurgence in masculinity after a former police officer was sentenced to three years in prison for murdering a man with a samurai sword.
Mustangs are a men’s movement, and it’s not hard to see why it took a former officer years to get what he wanted.
But a judge on Monday said the city of San Cristobal had gone too far when it convicted Officer Jose Luis Montoya-Garcia, 42, for killing Pedro Francisco Lopez, 39, in a city park on Nov. 6, 2013.
Montoya is now serving a two-year sentence in a state prison for the killing, which was captured on video.
The city has been in a public uproar after the video surfaced, with residents, lawyers and the city’s mayor calling for Montoya’s release.
The San Cristobalt city attorney’s office has argued that Montoya was acting in self-defense when he shot Lopez, and that he didn’t know Lopez was armed when he opened fire on him.
The court found that Montoyas actions were reasonable under the circumstances.
But in his sentencing hearing Monday, Judge Ricardo L. Hernandez said the killing was unjustified, because Lopez was unarmed.
“The killing was an excessive and unjustified use of deadly force by the officers,” Hernandez wrote in his decision.
He said the case was an example of “judicial misconduct” in the courts.
Montoya-GARCIA’s attorney, Ricardo Villanueva, called Montoya “an honorable man” who “did the right thing” by shooting Lopez, but did not give him the benefit of the doubt.
Montaya-Garraga had previously worked for the San Cristobo police department, which has been under fire for excessive force and misconduct in recent years.
He was accused of killing two other people, including a homeless man who was not armed.
Montayos wife, who was in the courtroom Monday, was also in the gallery.
She did not speak during the hearing, but told reporters afterward that she was “disappointed” by the sentence.
“It is important to remember that we are all human beings, and there are human elements to every human life,” Villanuez said.
“We have to live with them, and I hope the court recognizes that, because this kind of brutality will not end.” San Cristóbal, located in the northern region of Tamaulipas, has seen a rise in violence over the past decade, especially against women and young people.
A recent report by the state government found that nearly a third of all homicides in Tamaula are linked to drug trafficking and gangs.