Police were still seeking leads Saturday in the killings of six family members found dead Thursday inside a home in Gage Park, a crime that has shaken the Southwest Side community and also he tiny Mexican town that the victims once called home.
Three generations of the Martinez family were among the dead found inside a tidy brick bungalow in the 5700 block of South California on Thursday after one of the victims hadn’t shown up for work since Tuesday.
Inside the house, the officers found “a bloody mess” and the bodies of Noe Martinez Sr, 62; his wife Rosaura, 58; son Noe Martinez Jr., 38; daughter Maria Herminia Martinez, 32, and her sons, 13-year-old Leonardo Cruz and 10-year-old Alexis Cruz.
On Saturday, family friend Vicente Lopez silently watched as mourners set flowers and candles at the feet of six wooden crosses posted outside the Martinez’s home. Lopez said he had grown up with Noe Martinez Jr. in La Noria, a town of a few hundred in Mexico’s Guanajuato state.
“They were good people,” Lopez said, scrolling through Facebook posts from friends and family on both sides of the border, all expressing condolences or sharing news reports about the killings.
The two boys suffered “sharp-force trauma” injuries, according to the Cook County medical examiner’s office, which said they were inflicted by an unknown sharp object. Their mother suffered multiple gunshot wounds.
Noe Martinez Sr. suffered sharp-force injuries, and his wife and son both had sharp- and blunt-force injuries, according to the medical examiner’s office.
The police have said they believe the family was targeted but haven’t given any details.
The doors to the house were locked, nothing was taken, and the house wasn’t ransacked, according to the police, who have said none of the victims was tied up.
The bodies were discovered after a co-worker called the olice to report Noe Martinez Jr. hadn’t shown up for his job washing windows at O’Hare Airport the previous two days.
Neighbors and relatives said the family was friendly and close-knit, with an extended network of relatives throughout the city, in Texas and in Mexico. Noe Martinez Sr. immigrated to the United States nearly two decades ago, and his son and daughter followed not long after. Martinez Sr. and his wife also have another daughter, who lives in Mexico.
Herminia Martinez was separated from the father of her sons, who lived in Mexico but had visited Chicago as recently as Christmas, according to neighbors.