A Nogales, Sonora police officer assists a woman fleeing the scene of a drug related shooting near a major shopping mall on Sept. 12, 2008 in Nogales, Sonora.

Arizona Daily Star 2008

A new study about drug violence in Mexico from the Trans-Border Institute in San Diego shows that the 15,273 killings in 2010 set a new record. It also found that 84 percent of the killings occurred in four states: Chihuahua, Sinaloa, Guerrero and Baja California.

The report, which is based on data from the Mexican government, shows Sonora registered the 12th-most "organized crime killings" in 2010 and has accounted for the ninth-most from 2007-2010. 

The 495 killings in 2010 in Sonora marked an increase from each the previous three years but paled in comparison to the 4,427 in Chihuahua, the 1,815 in Sinaloa and the 1,209 in Tamaulipas.

The 1,253 from 2007-2010 is also well below the 10,134 in Chihuahua in that span, the 4,384 in Sinaloa and the 2,727 in Guerrero.

Here's the first three graphs of a summary of the report:

"Drawing on new data released by the Mexican government, the Trans-Border Institute issued a report today on drug violence in Mexico.  The report, titled Drug Violence in Mexico: Data and Analysis Through 2010, was authored by Viridiana Ríos and David Shirk and builds on a previous study released one year earlier. The new study reviews available data and analyzes the factors that contributed to extreme levels of violence in Mexico through 2010, the worst year on record.

According to Mexican government data, more than 34,550 killings were officially linked to organized crime during the administration of President Felipe Calderón (2006-12). Based on multiple years of monitoring drug violence in Mexico, the 15,000 organized crime killings that occurred in 2010 set a new record as well as an increase of nearly 60% from the previous year.

The new TBI report underscores the geographic concentration of violence, with 84% of all homicides from organized crime in 2010 occurring in just four of Mexico’s 32 states (Chihuahua, Sinaloa, Guerrero and Baja California) and over 70% occurring in 80 of the country’s roughly 2,450 municipalities. The top five most violent municipalities in 2010 were Ciudad Juárez (2,738 killings), Culiacán (587), Tijuana (472), Chihuahua (670), and Acapulco (370), which together accounted for 32% of all the drug-related homicides in 2010."


Here's the year-by-year breakdown of "organized crime killings" from the report, for all of Mexico and for a few selected states:


2007: 2,826

2008: 6,837

2009: 9,614

2010: 15,273


2007: 141

2008: 252

2009: 365

2010: 495


2007: 244

2008: 2,118

2009: 3,345

2010: 4,427


2007: 426

2008: 1,084

2009: 1,059

2010: 1,815


2007: 299

2008: 412

2009: 879

2010: 1,137

Baja California

2007: 209

2008: 778

2009: 484

2010: 540