Birthday memorial planned for New Mexico girl who was raped, killed
(CNN) — Mourners planned a “heavenly birthday” memorial Sunday for Victoria Martens, the 10-year-old New Mexico girl who Albuquerque police say was raped by her mother’s boyfriend and then killed while her mother watched.
More than 2,000 people said on Facebook that they planned to attend the gathering at an Albuquerque park for the girl that supporters called “Princess Victoria.”
Her dismembered body was found wrapped in a burning blanket and stuffed in a bathtub Wednesday, a day after her 10th birthday.
A Facebook page set up for the memorial service said the city’s mayor was expected to speak at Sunday’s event. Mourners were asked to wear purple, Victoria’s favorite color.
“This sweet angel was looking forward to celebrating her birthday,” the Facebook page said. “So that’s what we’re going to do! Join us at Mariposa Park for a birthday party fit for a princess. Please bring bubbles that we will be sending to Heaven.”
Albuquerque police have identified three suspects in the killing: Victoria’s mother, Michelle Martens; her mother’s boyfriend, Fabian Gonzales; and Gonzales’ cousin, Jessica Kelley.
Martens was charged in court Thursday with kidnapping and child abuse resulting in death. Gonzales faces the same charges as well as child rape.
Kelley, who had been hospitalized with a foot injury, appeared in court Saturday. She was charged with kidnapping, child abuse resulting in death and child rape.
During Kelley’s court appearance, Judge Chris Schultz said “the crimes … display a depth of depravity that is unfathomable to me.”
During a vigil held Thursday held by family and friends, a mourner said Victoria will always be remembered by her smile.
According to a criminal complaint obtained by CNN, police arrived at Martens’ smoke-filled apartment to find two adults with minor injuries. A third adult tried to flee by jumping off a balcony.
Officers discovered Victoria’s body in a bathtub, partially wrapped in the burning blanket, the police complaint said.
The child had no pulse, her left leg was nearly severed and both her arms were missing, according to the document. She was pronounced dead at the scene.
A horrific crime
The document alleges horrific details that lead up to the killing. Michelle Martens told police her daughter was given methamphetamine “to calm her down” and that Gonzales had sex with the girl, according to the complaint.
Martens told police Gonzales choked her daughter to death. But Gonzales denied any involvement in the killing, telling police it was Kelley, who he identified as his cousin, who stabbed and dismembered Victoria.
Kelley had recently been released from prison and was staying with Martens at the time, Martens told police. CNN affiliate KOAT said both Kelley and Gonzales have extensive criminal records.
The mother apparently had a traffic citation in the past, according to the affiliate.
All three suspects were being held on $1 million bond.
Attorney Tom Clark told CNN he represents Gonzales and will meet with his client later this week.
Attorneys representing Michelle Martens and Jessica Kelley did not return calls from CNN.