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A farewell to arms?… or, do not operate machetes while using drugs

21 March 2007

Gabriel Zendejas, a crime reporter for the working class tabloid, Prensa, is something of a literary genius.  Although Mexican (and Latin American) crime news is usually churned out for the word count, Zendejas has a literary style that fits.  Crime reporters in the U.S. want to simplify the matter to a simple “this happened.  That happened.  Justice was done,” style that just doesn’t tell the story.  The people involved may not know the story, and there is no reason to pretend the reporter does.

Zenejas, working within the genre, is actually a pretty good writer.  The story telling element is all there, and he brings pathos, compassion and a dose of black humor to his Prensa reportage.  And, even his longest, most complex sentences are usually translatable. 

Drogado intenda robar casa en Tepito” is from the 19 March Prensa.

It was the hospital where an aggressive subject finished up, who, armed with a machete, had sought to ambush the residents of a house in the populated Tepito district, intending to assault them, but as he was under the influence of drugs and intoxicating liquors, was himself overhelmed and disamed before being given a phenomenal blow from his weapon.


These doings occurred at calle de Peñon, number 26, practically across the street from a house on Jesús Carranza, in which the subject was treated, who, due to the severity of his injuries, was unable to give his full name.


According to inhabitants of the place, the subject, a “teporocho” as he was called, entered the apartment building in Colonia Morelos, brandishing a machete, which which to abuse the residents, and having the results described herein.


According to some versions given by those present, it was suggested that the subject was thrown out of the building by those he intended to attack, but, wanting to avoid problems with the authorities, left him laying outside in a pool of his own blood. 


Nevertheless, other neighbors decided to report the incident to the authorities, and when a Secretariat of Public Security (SSP) patrol arrived, stated to these officers that a person of disreputable appearance was injured, thus asking for the intervention of first aid assistance from the Escuaudrón de Rescate y Urgencias Médicas (ERUM).


These latter, noticing for themselves that the subject was in need of medical attention, transported him to the Tramuatolical Hospital of Balbuena, where the lengthy process of determining who was responsible for the incident was begun.


One person said that the subject had some quarrel with the neighbors, and that inflamed by strong drink and under the influence of alcohol, sought to resolve them, resulting in the doings which followed, though everything that did happen will be determined by the authorities within the next several hours.

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