Texas man kills estranged wife as she shielded her three children before he turned the gun on himself
Police said Alvarez shot Martinez-Gutierrez several times as she was sitting in the car before walking in front of the car and killing himself. Their three children were inside the car and watched the horrifying event unfold, but were luckily unharmed
AUSTIN, TEXAS: A Texas mother-of-three was shot dead in front of her children while trying to protect them from her undocumented estranged husband, who then turned the gun on himself.
The gruesome discovery was made after deputies from the Austin Police Department responded to a Valero gas station at the 6300 Block of E. Riverside Drive, near Montopolis Drive, at around 6 am on Friday, December 6, to reports of a shooting, according to KXAN.
First responders declared 36-year-old Veneranda Martinez-Gutierrez and 43-year-old Florencio Felix Barron Alvarez dead on the scene.
Police said Alvarez shot Martinez-Gutierrez, who was his common-law wife, several times as she was sitting in the car before walking in front of the car and killing himself. Their three children were inside the car and watched the horrifying event unfold, but were luckily unharmed.
"Everybody just shut down," said Itzel Garcia, a close family friend, and neighbor of Martinez-Gutierrez. "We all cried. She didn't deserve it."
"She tried telling him, 'Papi, don't do this', but he wouldn't listen," she revealed. "They tried defending their mom, and it got to the point where she just collapsed on her daughter's lap."
Alvarez was reportedly deported from the US after he was convicted of inappropriately touching a 10-year-old at Allison Elementary School in 2016, but had somehow managed to re-enter the US in the last few months.
Garcia said that in the lead up to the murder-suicide, Alvarez had stalked and harassed Martinez-Gutierrez, both in-person and online. She said they tried filing police reports against him several times with proof that she was getting harassed, but they were not taken seriously.
A GoFundMe page set up to raise donations to cover Martinez-Gutierrez's funeral expenses has already surpassed the $12,000 goal and raised $12,956 at the time of writing.
"Today December 6, 2019, we lost a mother, daughter, sister, friend! No one in this life deserves it, these dates will always be very sad for the family!" a description read. "Veneranda Martinez left 1 son and 2 daughters! Under 14 years old!" the note added.
Anyone with further information on the incident has been advised to call Crime Stoppers at 512-472-TIPS or use the new Crime Stoppers App or email APD Homicide at [email protected]