A brilliant student at the Colegio Militar, he denied his pure Indian heritage and claimed to be a mestizo.
Displaying hatred for his Indian origin, Huerta as an army officer in 1880 slaughtered dozens of Mayas in the uprising in Yucatan. As a general, in 1911 Huerto indiscriminately ordered attacks against civilians and rebels alike in an attempt to defeat the forces of Emiliano Zapata. In 1912 President Madero appointed Huerta chief of staff. On February 22, 1913, Huerta had Madero imprisoned and then shot in the back, “while trying to escape.” Huerta proclaimed himself president of Mexico.
Defeated by the constitutionalist forces, Huerta resigned on July 15, 1914, and fled to the United States. He attempted to return to Mexico but was arrested on June 27, 1915. for illegally running guns across the border. He died as a prisoner at Fort Bliss.