Mesquite, TX – A family of four was discovered in their home Wednesday, having been dead for several days.
Police believe they’d been killed the Saturday before. Authorities had previously responded to the residence when a neighbor reported hearing gunfire. Officers checked on the house, but without cause were legally unable to force their way in.
Four days later a follow up was performed. Mail and newspapers lay untouched. After several attempts to make contact with the occupants’ officers made their way into the home. Once the bodies were found and investigation ensued.
Marcelo Vazquez, 44, his wife Angelica, 43, their son Alejandro (several reports cite his name as Alex and Alejandro), 18, and their daughter Paulina, 21, all died as a result of gunshot wounds.
Angelica and Paulina were found in one room, Marcelo and Alejandro in another of the family’s Mesquite home. A gun was on the floor next to Angelica.
Paulina had been home on spring break from school at the University of North Texas.
Alejandro had recently graduated from Mesquite High the year prior and was attending school locally at Eastfield College.
The Dallas County Medical Examiner’s office declared Thursday Angelica shot and killed her family and then herself. Angelica had been recently diagnosed with breast cancer. She’d undergone weeks of chemotherapy in an effort to battle the condition.
No note was left by Angelica explaining her actions, leaving the community and investigators perplexed as to what provoked the gruesome murder-suicide. A search of the home did not result in helpful clues.
The motive for the murder-suicide remains a mystery. Friends did mention how Angelica had grown more distant in recent months, presumably depressed over her cancer, though many thought she’d been recovering well.
The Mesquite Police Department did not disclose further details as the situation is still being investigated. A makeshift memorial of flowers, letters, and stuffed animals has accumulated outside of the Vazquez residence.
The Vazquez couple met and married 23 years ago near Guadalajara, Mexico, and the family had moved to the United States in the early 90s. Angelica worked for the Mesquite Independent School District as a cafeteria aide until May 2012. Marcelo was a truck driver.
Services will be held locally in Mesquite for the family Sunday afternoon, and the burial will take place in Mexico.