Town Elects Candidate Who Was Shot to Death

Mayoral winner was killed hours before the polls opened in Ecuador
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 7, 2023 4:45 PM CST
Town Elects Candidate Who Was Shot to Death
Electoral workers prepare ballots Sunday in Quito, Ecuador.   (AP Photo/Dolores Ochoa)

A candidate shot to death the day before elections in Ecuador was elected mayor of the city of Puerto López. Omar Menendez, 41, was killed Saturday by gunmen while he was working in an office with campaign staffers, the BBC reports; a teenager also died of gunshot wounds. Menendez's party, Citizen's Revolution, selected Verónica Isabel Lucas Marcillo to serve as mayor in his place, per CBS News. Police, who are investigating the attack, have made no arrests and have not released information about a possible motive.

Menendez was the second mayoral candidate killed in Ecuador in two weeks. Julio César Farachio, 45, who was running for mayor of the coastal town of Salina, also was shot to death. A suspect, who police said had threatened the candidate, has been arrested. Homicides are surging in the country, and measures to deal with crime, including a referendum to allow Ecuadorans accused of ties to organized crime to be extradited to other nations, were on the ballot Sunday. The results have not been announced. (More Ecuador stories.)

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