- Two billboards along highways in El Paso, Texas were vandalized and had mannequins hanging off of them
- One reads 'silver or lead' in Spanish which is taken to mean that police and business owners can either take drug cartels' bribes or die
- Worries spreading that cartels that have ruled Mexican border towns with violence may be headed north
The fear now for many is that the 'warnings' shows that the drug cartels- which have not been identified by name- are willing to bring the violence from Mexican border towns into Texas.
'Maybe the problems in Juarez are coming over here,' El Paso resident Javier Padilla told KHOU.
Mr Padilla and his wife Maria Ramos know the terror of drug cartels on a personal level after two relatives were murdered in the area of Juarez in 2009.
The second instance of vandalism had a more obtuse warning, but the theme ran through since the message was written on an existing Drug Enforcement Agency billboard.
The message was different this time, as the paint read: 'Dying for drugs' was written over a wanted poster calling for the capture of drug lord Rafael Caro Quintero.
This second mannequin was dressed in jeans rather than the suit and tie from the other instance.
The mannequins were a particularly jarring image for many familiar with the drug war, as some of the most violent drug lords south of the border regularly hang offenders off highway overpasses.
While a warning from drug lords seems like one of the most likely prospects, KHOU reports that prosecutors have another theory that the vandalism also could have been caused by activist groups working against the war on drugs.