ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE/NBC) – The young girl who was killed in a northwest Albuquerque apartment complex had just turned 10 years old. Friends say the little girl was supposed to celebrate her birthday on the day she was killed.
It happened around 4:30 Wednesday morning at the Arroyo Villas Apartment complex near Golfcourse and Irving. Police say the call came out as a “battery” call and when officers arrived on scene, they found 10-year-old Victoria Martens dead.
APD says they are bringing charges against Fabian Gonzales, Michelle Martens and Jessica Kelley in connection to the murdered 10-year-old. Martens is the 10-year-old’s mother and Gonzales is Marten’s boyfriend; Kelley is Gonzales’ cousin. All three of the suspects have criminal histories.
According to the Albuquerque Police Department, the three tortured the girl by drugging and raping her.
“They injected this little girl with methamphetamines to make her calm down so they could do what they wanted to do to this little girl,” said APD spokesman Tanner Tixier.
She was stabbed and strangled to death. Police say the three then tried to dispose of her lifeless body.
Police say Gonzales and Martens were arrested for kidnapping. They say Gonzales and his cousin Jessica Kelley are also charged with sexual penetration of a minor under the age of 15, child abuse resulting in great bodily harm or death, tampering with evidence and a number of other charges.
When pressed for answers about what happened, Gonzales pinned everything on Kelley.
“I tried my best to protect Michelle and the baby,” said Gonzales. “Jessica Kelley did it.”
KRQE News 13 has learned the suspects in the girl’s death are no strangers to the law. Jessica Kelley does have a long rap sheet, but so does Gonzales.
Both Kelley and Gonzales have violent histories with multiple charges of battery against a household member. Gonzales has four battery charges on his record, two resulting in great bodily harm. He was also charged with an open count of child abuse in 2014 and abandonment of a child that same year.
Jessica Kelley’s record is somewhat similar. She also has four battery charges on her sheet, plus one pending domestic abuse charge she’s supposed to appear in court for on August 29th. Those charges were filed back in 2011.
Kelley pleaded no contest to assaulting a peace officer in 2007 and to DWI in 2011. She was found guilty for another DWI in 2010. Kelley also has two shoplifting and one drug trafficking charge.
Michelle Martens on the other hand, appears clean, according to NM Courts. The only cases found for her were related to child support.
“Our detectives are currently conducting interviews with several people. There are no outstanding suspects,” said Chief Gorden Eden with APD.
Investigators took pictures and even went to the roof to examine the scene. A car was also towed from the scene with police following close behind.
“A horrific tragedy” and “gruesome” was how police were describing the scene.
A woman, who says she is the little girl’s godmother, says she was called to the child’s home Wednesday morning by her friend because there was a “tragedy.”
Laura Bobbs says the little girl just turned 10 years old. The woman was planning to celebrate her birthday with her after school.
“She turned 10 yesterday and we were gonna celebrate her birthday today after school,” said Bobbs.
The woman said she planned to take the 10-year-old to get her nails done.
Bobb’s recalled their phone call Tuesday night: “She says ‘Auntie?’ and I said ‘Yeah?’ She said ‘I’m turning 10 so don’t buy me no toys.’”
She described the little girl as someone with a big heart, who was always looking out for others.
“A caring person…and she loved people,” said the woman. “She loved life.”
Bobbs was there all morning as investigators combed over this scene, going in and out of the apartment where the crime happened.
“Who does this? I counsel people. I council people in grief. I’m a grief counselor. I have a degree in psychology. You would think I would be stronger than this, but when it’s you that it happened to, who’s going to counsel me? Who’s going to help me through this?” Bobbs said.
Governor Susana Martinez released this statement:
There are no words that can convey the sorrow and sadness I feel for the innocent child who was killed in this atrocious attack. What happened to this little girl is unspeakable, and justice should come down like a hammer on the monster who committed this murder.”