Gunmen disguised as mariachi musicians kill 5, injure 8 others in Mexico City plaza

Dozens of mariachi bands were serenading couples and families in Mexico City when five men disguised as musicians unleashed a hail of gunfire.

Five people were killed and several others were wounded Friday after a group of men wearing traditional mariachi suits descended on the city’s iconic Plaza Garibaldi and opened fire at a restaurant, the city’s prosecutor’s office said.

Police found three people dead and two others were taken to hospitals where they later died. The victims were identified as three men and two women whose ages ranged from 22 to 46, officials said.

A foreigner, who was not identified, was among the eight others who were wounded, the prosecutor’s office said.

The gunmen fled on motorcycles after the shooting, officials say, and were still on the run as of Saturday night.

Local authorities said it was unclear why the men opened fire.

The shooting took place as crowds kicked off Mexico’s Independence Day celebrations on Friday and during a busy night at Plaza Garibaldi, a popular square where mariachis play around the clock for tourists and locals.

The roots of mariachi music in Mexico City can be traced to a bar that dominates one side of the plaza.

Gunshots can be heard over footage of a man playing “La Cucaracha” on a large harp.

Video footage also shows dozens of police officers at the square in the aftermath of the shooting. They could be seen standing next to an area sealed off with yellow tape and near the bronze statue of Javier Solis, a Mexican singer who was popular for his boleros and mariachi ballads, as some mariachis continued playing music as usual.