Quintuple Murder Suspect May Have Killed Last Year

Cops believe Martin Martinez killed 2-year-old in October
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 21, 2015 2:07 AM CDT
Updated Jul 21, 2015 5:03 AM CDT
This booking image from Sunday released by the Santa Clara County Sheriff's Office shows Martin Martinez.   (Santa Clara Sheriff's Office via AP)
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(Newser) – Modesto, Calif., is in mourning and a 30-year-old man is in custody after one of the most horrific murders in the city's history. Police found the bodies of two women and three girls—a 6-month-old, a 5-year-old, and a 6-year-old—in a house on Saturday afternoon and arrested Martin Martinez the next day, the Washington Post reports. Police say Martinez had a relationship with murder victim Dr. Amanda Crews, while the other murdered woman is his mother, reports the Modesto Bee. Martinez was the father of the 6-month-old and police say he is also the suspect in the death of Crews' 2-year-old son last October. The two other girls found in the home were Crews' daughter and Martinez's niece, the Bee reports.

Police have not released details on a motive or on the cause of death. Just two days before the mass killing, a pathologist informed police that the death of 2-year-old Christopher Ripley, Crews' son from a previous relationship, was a homicide, the Post reports. He died from head injuries while Martinez was watching him. Police say they did not "drop the ball" and they do not believe Martinez was aware of the homicide finding. "We put together a case—there has to be enough probable cause to arrest this individual and there has to be enough for the district attorney to file charges," Modesto's chief of police told reporters. "It's horrible this tragedy happened, but there [were] no indications this crime would occur."

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