updated 5/30/2011 4:52:53 PM ET 2011-05-30T20:52:53

Shootings in Mexico's Pacific coast resort of Acapulco left two police officers and three suspected drug cartel gunmen dead, police said Monday.

The confrontations on Sunday began when gunmen traveling in a convoy of eight vehicles opened fire on an Acapulco municipal police patrol car Sunday, killing two officers.

Federal officers responding to the reports of gunfire later located the convoy; in the ensuing gunfight, three suspects were killed.

Police in Guerrero state, where Acapulco is located, said in statement said that the three dead assailants were found with assault rifles, military-style uniforms and bulletproof vests.

On Monday, Ramon Almonte, the Guerrero state police chief, said he will ask the federal congress to make it easier for common citizens to get permits for weapons to defend themselves.

Almonte's brother was killed on Jan. 1 in a rural town in Guerrero by unidentified gunmen. The state has been plagued by such executions.

"When you fight someone and at least you have a 'piece,' the person who is attacking you might think twice," Almonte said. "We cannot go on the way we are."

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At present, Mexico's constitution allows citizens to have one or two low-caliber guns in their homes, but they must get a permit from the Defense Department and the process is complicated. Almonte did not give specifics on how he would make it easier.

"Having a weapon should be a right, because the bad guys are few and we, the good guys, are many, so we can't allow ourselves to be held hostage by the few," Almonte said.

Federal police also reported Monday that the bodies of four more attackers had been found near the scene of a gun battle that occurred last week in the western Mexico states of Jalisco.

The discovery of the four bodies brings the total number of assailants killed in the confrontation Friday to 15. Federal police had earlier reported finding the bodies of 11 victims.

Federal police raided the area Friday after one of their helicopters was fired on May 24; two officers aboard the craft were injured. Police also arrested about three dozen members of the La Familia drug cartel in the raids.

Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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