04/06/11— Two men who have now been identified as Sergio Salcido Luna, 25, and Kevin Joel Romero, 28, were shot to death on Monday April 4, 2011, while waiting to cross the border at the San Ysidro port of entry between Tijuana and San Diego. The two American citizens were found dead in their Mazda pick up truck about a half mile from the border along with 9 mm shell casings. Baja California authorities have reported that they were shot multiple times with a 9 millimeter weapon at 2:40 a.m. and that they do not have any leads on suspects or motives right now. The type of weapon used is usually favored by the drug cartels, although shooting by organized crime groups at the border is extremely rare and authorities are not convinced that such groups played a role in the shooting.
The two men moved to Tijuana from the United States to save money and to improve their quality of life, but because their jobs were in the United States, they would cross the border every morning to beat the rush going into California. They worked at West Coast Beverage Maintenance, a beer equipment maintenance company located in San Diego. The owner, Matt Pelot, expressed his extreme shock at hearing of the news and stressed the quality character of both men. Joseph L. Crook, the U.S. Consulate spokesman, also expressed the consulate’s “condolences to the families of the two men at this time.”
This is not the first attack against Americans in Mexico, as was revealed in a 2010 State Department report that 49 Americans were directly targetted by drug gangs. Despite the news, most people interviewed at the border waiting to get into the U.S. did not express any reservation about crossing upon hearing of the rare attack.