At least six people, including a 17-year-old mother and her six-month-old baby, were killed in what California’s Tulare County Sheriff’s Office described to CNN as a “cartel-style execution” early Monday morning.
“While investigators cannot confirm the shooters were from a cartel, the sheriff thinks it appears to be a ‘cartel-style execution,'” CNN reported. “Drug cartels have notoriously engaged in deadly violence, including the deployment of hit squads against perceived enemies and members of law enforcement that threaten their drug trafficking efforts.”
In a Facebook post, the Tulare County Sheriff’s Office said deputies responded to a shooting in Goshen, a community of just more than 5,000 people in central California, during the early hours of Monday morning and found two deceased victims in the street.
Speaking to reporters on the sidelines of the crime scene, Tulare County Sheriff Mike Boudreaux said investigators “believe that this is not a random act of violence.”
“We believe that this was a targeted family,” Boudreaux said. “We believe that there are gang associations that [are] involved in this scene as well as potential narcotics investigations.”
The sheriff’s office even executed a narcotics search warrant for the residence where the shootings took place just one week prior, Boudreaux added.
The tragic episode marks the deadly presence of Mexican drug cartel violence that has begun to spill over the border along with the flood of migrants into the United States. U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) data show federal law enforcement has “recorded more than 4 million apprehensions” in a year and a half, “more than the previous four fiscal years combined,” according to the Heritage Foundation.
The surge in migration, and the ensuing violence that comes with it, led House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy to demand Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas’ resignation.
“He cannot and must not remain in that position,” McCarthy said in November, just more than a month before his election to House speaker. “If Secretary Mayorkas does not resign, House Republicans will investigate every order, every action, and every failure [and] will determine whether we can begin an impeachment inquiry.”
McCarthy’s district borders the community where the six individuals were executed Monday. The speaker’s office did not immediately respond to The Federalist’s request for comment.