Texas freelance photojournalist disappears in Mexico

A month has passed since a freelance photojournalist from Texas working in Mexico has been heard from, reported the television station Fox 29 of San Antonio the night of Thursday, June 21.

Freelancer Zane Plemmons was staying in a hotel in the border city of Nuevo Laredo when he left to take photos of a shooting, the hotel's receptionist told the journalist's sister, Lizanne Sánchez.

Plemmons also had plans to visit family in Mexico, but he never arrived. Worried, the family members called the hotel, where the receptionist told them that two armed and masked men had asked for the keys to the journalist's room, then taken his belongings and left, Sánchez told Fox 29.

Zane Alejandro Plemmons Rosales, who has dual U.S. and Mexican citizenship, was working for the Mexican newspaper El Debate at the time of his disappearance.

Because of the intense wave of violence, newspapers in the city of Nuevo Laredo have stopped publishing stories about organized crime. In 2011, a journalist in Nuevo Laredo was decapitated for reporting anonymously via social media about organized crime.

Mexico is the most dangerous country in the Americas for the press. See this Knight Center for Journalism in the Americas map of attacks against the Mexican press.

Note from the editor: This story was originally published by the Knight Center’s blog Journalism in the Americas, the predecessor of LatAm Journalism Review.