Edgar Alberto Nava, the founder of La Verdad de Zihuatanejo, was found dead in Zihuatanejo, Guerrero state, at approximately 10 a.m. on August 2, 2019. A statement published by the state’s attorney general’s office said that he was killed with at least one gunshot.
Nava had received threats over his reporting, the journalist’s friend and former colleague, Omar Bello Pineda, told CPJ shortly after the killing. “[Nava] told me two months ago that he had received death threats over some stories about criminals, who had felt uncomfortable with what he wrote,” said Bello, who is also a spokesperson for the Mexican Association of Journalists at Risk and Displaced. “He told me that he had taken down those stories.” Bello was unable to provide CPJ with further details on the threats.
Bello said that Nava started La Verdad de Zihuatanejo, which publishes on Facebook, in 2014. He added that Nava had been a reporter since 2005 and worked previously for El Diario de Zihuatanejo and El Despertar de la Costa.
In October, 2018, Nava was appointed director of regulations for the municipal government of Zihuatanejo, Bello said. He continued to publish articles, including news on the local government, as well as crime and violence, commonly known as “red news” in Mexico.
An official at the Federal Mechanism for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders and Journalists, who asked for anonymity because they are not authorized to speak on the matter, told CPJ on August 2, 2019 that Nava was not enrolled in the federal protection scheme.
Ricardo Sánchez Pérez del Pozo, who heads the office of the Federal Special Prosecutor for Attention to Crimes Committed against Freedom of Expression, told CPJ on August 2 that his office had not opened an investigation in Nava’s murder case.