Local

Jan 19, 2014 8:08 PM by Nathan O'Neal

Border community on edge after violent cartel gunfight in Agua Prieta

DOUGLAS, Ariz. - The border community in southeast Arizona is on edge after an intense gun battle ravaged a city just south of the U.S.-Mexico Border.

Authorities said that a violent gun battled took place in Agua Prieta around 1 a.m. Saturday, just south of Douglas, Ariz., claiming between eight and 13 lives, according to the Cochise County Sherriff's Office. None of the listed deaths are U.S. citizens.

The cartel-related gun fight reportedly involved massive amounts of munitions, including automatic weapons, 50-caliber weapons and even hand grenades.

"We don't even want to go over there... might as well stay safe here," said Carina Martinez, a life-long Douglas resident.

Martinez made a quick trip to Agua Prieta Sunday afternoon to go shopping. She described the streets of the Mexican city as ‘nervous.'

"It's completely dead... everybody's armed over there... big guns," Martinez told News 4 Tucson.

Even the Port of Entry is quiet with minimal traffic flow.

"There's usually a big line. You take at least 30-40 minutes tops... and nothing, it's dead," Martinez said.

Cochise County Sheriff Mark Dannels is urging everyone to remain on high alert.

"It's a very unstable, very unrest situation right now. Hopefully the calm will continue and we'll go back to normality, but in the meantime people need to be very vigilant with their surroundings," Dannels said.

While law enforcement doesn't believe that cartel violence will spill over into the U.S., it's unclear how long the residents in Douglas and the surrounding areas will remain on edge.

» There are multiple updates to this story. Please click here to get the latest information.

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