Arrests made in massacre of Mormon family members in Mexico


Three suspects in the massacre of an American Mormon family in Mexico last month were detained Sunday, Mexican authorities said, bringing the total number of people arrested to four.

The nine U.S. citizens were members of the same family, among a breakaway group of Mormons who had lived in Mexico since the late 1800s, after polygamy was outlawed in the U.S. The victims were three women and six children, two of them 8-month-old twins.

The ambush occurred Nov. 4 when three vehicles traveling near La Mora, the village about 70 miles south of Douglas, Arizona, where members of the offshoot Mormon sect had lived for decades, were attacked by gunmen who kept firing even after one of the drivers got out of the car to indicate they were not a threat. At least one of the cars was incinerated after it exploded when the gas tank was hit.

Eight children fled the scene, hiding for hours in the brush, and five were treated in the U.S.

The dead were Rhonita Miller, 30, trapped inside the charred Chevy; her daughter, 10, and 12-year-old son and the twins also died in the car. Also among the dead were Dawna Ray Langford, 43, and Christina Langford Johnson, 31. Two of Dawna Langford’s children, ages 11 and 2, also died in a hail of gunfire.

All the victims belonged to the LeBaron family, and all were dual U.S.-Mexican citizens.

The Prosecutor General, the National Guard and the National Center for Intelligence all collaborated in the arrests, Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador’s office told CBS News. The FBI assisted in the investigation.

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