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Latino Daily News

Monday March 19, 2012

LATINO BLOTTER: Iraq War Veteran Abel Gutierrez Kills Sister, Self - Mother Still Missing

LATINO BLOTTER: Iraq War Veteran Abel Gutierrez Kills Sister, Self - Mother Still Missing

Photo: Abel's DMV photo - Iraq War veteran killed himself after allegedly killing sister, mother missing

Click Here to Enlarge Photo

Police believe an Iraq War veteran in southern California killed his sister, himself, and possibly his mother.

Two weeks ago, the family of 27-year-old Abel Gutierrez called police, saying the national guardsman was talking about suicide and brandishing guns. However, a police spokesman told the Associated Press that the family told the officer who arrived that they did not feel he was dangerous and did not request a psychiatric hold.

Spokesman Sgt. Chad Gallacinao said, “At the end of the contact, the family said they did not fear any physical harm from him, but they wanted him to get help. The officer knew there were firearms present inside the house. However, they were legally possessed and he did not display signs that he was a danger to himself or others. If he did, we would have seized the firearms.”

However, Wednesday, a roommate at the family’s apartment called police who discovered the bodies of Gutierrez and his 11-year-old sister Lucero. It was apparent they have died of gunshot wounds. His mother, Martha Gutierrez, 52, is still missing and police say they have no leads regarding her whereabouts. Sunday, they suspended their search.

Gutierrez reportedly had symptoms of PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder) making this the latest on the growing list of cases involving Iraq-Afghanistan veterans.

Gutierrez did not leave a suicide note and the investigation is ongoing.