By Alan Gomez / USA Today
Murders in Mexico fell for a third straight year in 2014 — the most pronounced declines occurring along the U.S. border — a sign the country is slowly stabilizing after gruesome drug wars.
There were 15,649 people murdered in Mexico in 2014, a 13.8 percent reduction from the previous year and down from a peak of 22,480 in 2011, according to a report set to be released Thursday by the University of San Diego’s Justice in Mexico Project.
The reductions were steeper along the U.S.-Mexican border. Five of the six Mexican states that border the USA reported a combined drop of 17.7 percent in the number of homicides.
“These data really help to underscore that we’re talking about a sea change in violence,” said David Shirk, co-author of the report and director of the Justice in Mexico Project. “You still have elevated levels of crime, so we still have a long way to go. But there is improvement, and we have to acknowledge that improvement and understand why it’s happening so we can try to further it.”