MEXICO CITY, Jan. 18 (UPI) -- Three people were injured when a government helicopter engaged in a military operation tangled in a zip line and crashed in southwestern Mexico, officials say.
The helicopter was being used in an effort by Mexican security forces to stop fighting between vigilante groups and the Knights Templar drug cartel in the state of Michoacan, the Los Angeles Times reported Friday.
Two police officers and a technician were injured in the crash in the municipality of Tancitaro, a government statement said. The pilot and co-pilot were not injured.
Federal police have taken over the functions of local police in 27 of the state's 113 municipalities after armed citizens groups forcibly took over a number of towns and cities. The groups have announced their intention to move on the city of Apatzingan, a stronghold of the drug cartel.