In yet another case of mounting violence targeting the public and police alike, a municipal police officer in San Luis Rio Colorado was gunned down Thursday night on the border city's west side.

The officer was off duty and driving his personal vehicle about 11 p.m. when shots were fired at him from another automobile near the intersection of Constitucion street and Los Pinos Boulevard, according to the municipal police department.

Municipal police identified the slain officer as Alex Ivan Gamez Navarro, 27.

Police from three different agencies launched a search for the attackers but had made no arrest as of Friday.

Gamez is the third municipal police officer from San Luis Rio Colorado killed in less than a year, a period that has seen a spike in homicides that authorities attribute to fighting among drug traffickers.

The murder came two days after three shooting incidents in San Luis Rio Colorado, one of which resulted in one person being wounded, as well as a police shootout in El Golfo de Santa Clara.

The Sonora state prosecutor's office said a 29-year-old San Luis Rio Colorado resident identified only as Francisco N. was killed by police officers who were returning gunfire directed at them from another vehicle.

The slain man, one of several subjects in the vehicle, was wearing a bulletproof vest and carrying an AK-47 assault rifle, the prosecutor's office said.

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