In a tragic ending to a story of courage and fortitude, the Mexican activist who succeeded in solving her daughter's 2012 kidnapping and murder was found dead Wednesday—Mexico’s Mother’s Day. Miriam Rodríguez Martínez, known for standing up to the Zetas drug cartel by bringing her girl's killers to justice, was shot in her San Fernando home. The BBC reports a Zetas member who had been convicted of killing her daughter, Karen Alejandra, escaped from jail in March; the New York Times' report states more than one escaped. Whatever the number, Rodríguez began receiving death threats. Tamaulipas Attorney General Irving Barrios tells Reuters police began thrice-daily patrols around her house, but those close to her say she didn't get the protection she needed.
The Times provides some location-based context: The state of Tamaulipas, which borders the southern tip of Texas, is plagued with the highest missing persons rate in the country. Her two-year search for her daughter ended with Rodríguez finding the unmarked grave Karen was buried in; the information and names she passed to police resulted in the arrests and trials of what Barrios says were nine people. Rodríguez went on to become director of Colectivo de Desaparecidos de San Fernando, an organization supporting 600 families searching for disappeared relatives. Tamaulipas' governor addressed the tragedy, tweeting (translated): "The government ... will not allow the death of Miriam Rodríguez to turn into yet another statistic." (Read more Mexico stories.)