Omar Pimentel, the police chief of Nuevo Laredo, Mexico who suddenly quit Wednesday evening, left the job in much the same way he started it eight months ago – quietly but upbeat, says the San Antonio Express-News. His predecessor was gunned down hours after taking office, victim of a turf war between rival drug cartels that continued during Pimentel’s watch, leaving at least 57 dead in Nuevo Laredo this year alone.
Few blamed Pimentel for quitting, but his departure seemed abrupt. He denied being pushed out by either of the warring drug smuggling organizations, the Gulf cartel that has long held sway here or the Sinaloa cartel that has been trying to muscle its way in for more than two years. Eight months in such a high-stress position would be enough for anybody, Pimentel said: “For mental health reasons, it’s a good time to take a break.”