The six family members whose bodies were found inside a Southwest Side Chicago home Thursday were identified Saturday by the Cook County medical examiner’s office.
The victims are 62-year-old Noe Martinez Sr., 58-year-old Rosaura Martinez, 38-year-old Noe Martinez Jr., 32-year-old Maria Herminia Martinez, 13-year-old Leonardo Cruz, and 10-year-old Alexis Cruz. The cause of death for all six victims was ruled a homicide.
According to the autopsy report, the victims died of multiple sharp and blunt force injuries due to assault, except for Maria Martinez, who died of multiple gunshot wounds.
Family members said the people who lived in the home were a couple, their son, their daughter, and their daughter’s two children. Crosses bearing each name were placed outside the home as a memorial Friday.
Gage Park Murders
“They were a normal family. Everything was fine,” Noemi Martinez, 29, said from Dallas during a phone interview in Spanish. She said her husband was a nephew and cousin of the home’s residents.
Investigators Friday would not say whether the crime was targeted, but did say the community was not facing an active threat.
“I would understand that people would have a heightened sense of concern but really there is nothing at this point that leads us to believe that this was a random act that this was somebody that broke into the house,” Interim Chicago Police Superintendent John Escalante said.
Officers conducting a welfare check discovered the bodies around 1:30 p.m. Thursday on the 5700 block of South California. A concerned co-worker called police after one of the men found in the home had not showed up to work for two days.
Motive Remains Unclear in Gage Park Slayings
Authorities continue to investigate what exactly happened inside the small brick home tucked away in a typically quiet neighborhood near 57th Street and California Avenue. Although police originally considered murder-suicide a possiblity, all six deaths have now been ruled as homicides.
Police said in a Friday morning news conference there had been no sign of forced entry and all the doors had been locked when officers arrived.
“It’s a rather complex scene,” Chicago Police Chief of Detectives Eugene Roy said Friday.
Friends told NBC5 the victims were a “good family” from Mexico with no known problems.
Loved Ones React After Southwest Side Family Found Slain
Martinez said the father worked at a factory in Chicago and the mother was a housewife. They were originally from the Mexican state of Guanajuato and had lived in Chicago for about a decade, Martinez said.
“Right now, we just want to know who did this,” she said. “They didn’t deserve this. We don’t understand what happened.”
Azcucena Martinez, who goes by Susy and is the niece of the couple, created a GoFundMe page to help the family send the bodies back to Mexico. As of Saturday, the page had received more than $22,000.
“There was never any problems so we couldn’t even think something happened to them,” said neighbor Mayra Diego. “They were very nice quiet people.”
No Signs of Forced Entry at Home Where Slain Family Found
News breaks at inconvenient times. Download one of the NBCChicago mobile apps and have the news come to you. Watch live streaming newscasts, receive critical push notifications on the go and stay in touch with your city around the clock.