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New Mexico Mom Confesses to Watching Both Kids Be Raped Before Daughter’s Death: Police

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Warning: Some of the following descriptions and language are graphic.

The New Mexico mom who confessed to witnessing her 10-year-old daughter’s rape shortly before the girl’s death had for months been organizing sexual assaults against both of her young children, while she watched, police say she told them.

Three hundred-plus pages of newly released police documents, obtained by PEOPLE, more fully reveal the harrowing final months of Victoria Martens’ life in Albuquerque, New Mexico — before, police say, she was drugged, raped, killed and then dismembered in late August.

What’s more, the documents detail the Martens family’s dissolution, upon Victoria’s death and the arrest of her mother, Michelle Martens.

Among the incident reports and police interview transcripts is a history of horror: According to the documents, Michelle explained to detectives how she first began forcing her children into sexual assaults — and why — and how that spiraled into bloodshed.

Speaking to PEOPLE, Michelle’s attorney said the public should avoid jumping to conclusions until the defense has made its case: “There’s a professional way to do this through our justice system.”

But the crime’s shocking violence has already rocked Albuquerque, and the governor called it “unspeakable.”

The new police documents help explain how it happened and how police closed in on the suspects. State officials have previously said they did not receive any reports of sexual or physical abuse regarding Victoria or her 8-year-old brother, Matthew.

But what did Michelle’s family and friends know? Her neighbors?

AP(2)
AP(2)

Here is what Michelle knew: In police interviews after Victoria’s death, she confessed to setting up meetings with multiple men to have sex with her son and daughter for her pleasure.

Michelle told police she was also sleeping with the men, who she met through online dating apps and at her job at a local Buy Buy Baby. According to the documents, she arranged the meetings between the men and her children because she was “curious.”

That curiosity apparently morphed into pleasure, as Michelle told police that she enjoyed being a witness to the rapes.

Albuquerque police declined to comment on the documents.

How the Abuse Began

During eight hours of police questioning following Victoria’s death on Aug. 23, Michelle detailed how she had sought out men to sexually assault her two children, Matthew and Victoria, which she enjoyed watching, according to the documents.

Michelle told police that within the last year multiple men raped her children using meth or sleep-aid products, such as ZzzQuil, to calm them down. Police repeatedly pressed Michelle on the number of assaults on both children, though the number changed over the course of questioning.

(She began cooperating with authorities only under the false pretense that another suspect had confessed to her role in Victoria’s death, according to the documents.)

It appears the kids’ abuse began after a man that Michelle was dating assaulted Victoria, she told police. When she found out the man was allegedly assaulting Victoria, she “got rid of him.”

But the abuse did not stop: Michelle said she began setting up meetings with local men to come to her home and meet her children.

Michelle met some men on the dating app Plenty of Fish, using “cues” and “signs” to pick up on whether they were interested in having sex with her children, she told police.

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“They asked me if I have any kids,” she told police of how she would know men were interested in her children. “I [would say] I have two.”

“I saw the signs [they] would give [Victoria],” Michelle said of the moment she knew men wanted to have sex with her daughter.

According to the documents, Michelle told police some of the men would also have sex with her son before sleeping with her.

Michelle also told police of how she witnessed her boyfriend, Fabian Gonzales, and his cousin Jessica Kelley rape, kill and dismember her daughter the night of Aug. 23. Michelle said she “let them do it [the sexual assault]” as she watched Victoria beg for them to stop. Matthew was reportedly not present at the time.

(Gonzales has blamed Kelley for the killing and sexual assault, according to his police interview.)

Metropolitan Detention Center via AP

Metropolitan Detention Center via AP

Michelle told police she first met Kelley, a convicted rapist, in June after she was released from prison.

Per Gonzales’ request, Kelley moved into Michelle’s home days before Victoria’s death, Michelle told police. Kelley had been babysitting another family’s children to make ends meet but needed a place to stay.

Michelle told police that at the time she didn’t know Kelley was interested in sexually assaulting children. She told police she knew Kelley and Gonzales were sexually assaulting her daughter days before her death. She said she believed Gonzales was having sex with Victoria every day for a month while she was at work.

At one point Michelle told police, of Victoria’s rape before her death, “I should have stopped it.”

The Possibility of More Charges

Michelle has been charged with kidnapping and child abuse resulting in death, while Gonzales faces the same charges as well as child rape. Kelley asked for a lawyer and has been charged with kidnapping, child abuse resulting in death and child rape.

All three have pleaded not guilty to their charges, according to officials.

The Bernalillo District Attorney’s Office could not comment on whether they plan on charging Michelle or others with raping her son, citing the ongoing investigation. Investigators are looking into whether Martens videotaped or photographed any of the sexual assaults, according to the documents.

It was not immediately clear in whose custody Michelle’s son, Matthew, is now — a relative or the state. Matthew’s father sought restraining orders against Michelle and the others soon after Victoria’s death, according to KOAT.

Metropolitan Detention Center via AP
Metropolitan Detention Center via AP

Michelle’s attorney, Gary Mitchell, tells PEOPLE the public shouldn’t be quick to judge before the defense has presented its case.

“Until you hear from the defense side, which will be months, I would not tempt to jump to too many conclusions,” he says, adding, “There’s a professional way to do this through our justice system, and that’s what we’re going to do.”

While Kelley’s attorney could not be reached for comment, Tom Clark, who is representing Gonzales, says he is waiting for more evidence to be released.

“We haven’t received DNA evidence,” Clark tells PEOPLE. “The allegations against my client are based on what [Martens] said, so the DNA evidence is going to be key.

“If there is no biological evidence that connects [Gonzales] to the crime, the state’s going to have a real hard time.”

In the same statement where she decried Victoria’s abuse, New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez said, “Justice should come down like a hammer.”

Gonzales, Kelley and Michelle are scheduled for trial in 2017.