CPJ Blog

Press Freedom News and Views

Monica Campbell

Monica Campbell is a freelance journalist and 2010 Nieman Fellow. She served as CPJ’s Mexico representative for several years.


Last week marked the fourth anniversary of the murder of Brad Will, a 36-year-old American activist and journalist who was shot while covering anti-government protests in the southern Mexican state of Oaxaca. His murderers remain at large. 


For those following the case of Bradley Roland Will, left, a U.S. activist-journalist killed while reporting on a protest movement in the southern Mexican state of Oaxaca in 2006, a long wait ended on February 18. After 16 months in prison, Juan Manuel Martínez, a grassroots activist from an impoverished neighborhood in Oaxaca, left his cell after a federal appeals tribunal exonerated him of murdering Will.

Three years ago today, an independent journalist named Bradley Roland Will was killed in Mexico while reporting on a heated protest movement in the capital city of the southern state of Oaxaca. Today, the crime remains unresolved. A man from Oaxaca, Juan Manuel Martínez Moreno, who many close followers of the case believe is innocent, was accused of the murder in October 2008. Martínez remains imprisoned awaiting trial. 
APOn July 26, the following headline appeared in Mexico's daily Milenio newspaper: "Canada: Will assassinated at point-blank range." Soon, similar headlines followed. The stories focused on a recent report by three Canadian investigators that sustains conclusions made by the Mexican authorities in the case of Bradley Roland Will, left, a U.S. video-journalist and activist killed in October 2006 in the southern Mexican state of Oaxaca. The government-commissioned report has sparked controversy for echoing the findings of Mexican authorities, whose investigation has been heavily questioned by local and international human rights groups and the Will family for being politicized and riddled with irregularities.

Last night, about 300 people gathered at San Francisco's Academy of Art University for a vigil for U.S. television journalists Euna Lee and Laura Ling. Today marks the 100th day of captivity in North Korea for the women, who were arrested in March by North Korean guards while filming a story about refugees for the California-based broadcaster Current TV. Earlier this month, the two reporters were sentenced by North Korea's highest court to 12 years hard labor after a closed-door trial. 
Emilio Gutiérrez Soto began fearing for his life when approximately 50 armed soldiers entered his home in Ascensión on May 5 without a permit. They told Gutiérrez they were searching for "weapons or drugs," he told CPJ. The soldiers did not find any evidence of illegal activity and left. Gutiérrez said he believed the search was meant to intimidate him for articles he had written about harassment charges alleged by citizens since the military began anti-drug trafficking operations in Chihuahua last year.

Gutiérrez decided to flee Mexico on June 14, when a trusted source overheard a military official talk about a plan to kill the journalist for reporting on alleged military crimes. Gutiérrez grabbed his 15-year-old son, clothes, his press pass, and left for the U.S. border.

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