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Murdered: Armando Rodriguez, crime reporter

Today in Ciudad Juarez, Armando Rodriguez, the crime reporter at the Diario de Juarez, was murdered in front of his own home this morning as he got in his car to drive his daughter to school. Rodriguez has covered nearly every murder in the unprecedented wave of violence in Ciudad Juarez -- which is right next to El Paso, Texas.

His work was important since no one else had the courage to document these crimes. His stories -- 800 this year alone -- appeared in one of the largest and best newspapers on either side of the U.S. Border - Diario de Juarez.

IRE Member Molly Molloy, an NMSU librarian, who maintains a great border listserv, called Rodriguez the "only one who really kept the count of the victims" of the violence. He was, in a word, the conscience of the community.

The wave of violence in Juarez this year has claimed more than 1,000 lives. To put this in perspective, Juarez had a murder rate that was less than other large American cities, like Houston, up until now. Previous crime waves there were much different -- they involved "hits" of organized crime members or the murders of women at the hands of serial killer(s).

Please encourage your newspapers to cover this story and to editorialize about it. Lives of border journalists are at stake.

-- IRE Board Member Lise Olsen, Houston Chronicle

Read more on the story from El Diario (Spanish), El Paso Times and

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