4 children and father stabbed to death in Georgia; mother charged

Posted July 09, 2017

A mother of five, who allegedly stabbed to death her four children and husband, has made her appearance in a Georgia court on Friday (7 July) with a smiling face.

Gwinnett County police said in a statement: 'What prompts a person to take the life of such innocent children and her spouse is something we may never understand.

Martinez was detained after the bodies were found inside the home in Loganville, about 30 miles east of Atlanta, Gwinnett County Police Corporal Michele Pihera told reporters at the scene on Thursday morning.

A Gwinnett police spokeswoman tells PEOPLE that Diana is "awake and talking".

Police say Martinez also stabbed her fifth child, but that the nine-year-old girl survived.

The children killed were identified as Isabela Martinez, 10; Dacota Romero, 7; Axel Romero, 2; and 4-year-old Dillan Martin-Romero.

Friday, Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials confirmed Martinez is in the country illegally.

Some 12 hours after that call, police believe, Martinez, 33, embarked on an unspeakable rampage, killing four of her children and their father, one by one.

BBC News reports that in Chicago, relatives of the family said Ms Martinez had been "a little down and depressed" because her father died in Mexico one day after Father's Day. However, the judge advised Martinez to hire a lawyer or allow one to be appointed to her, and the court subsequently appointed attorney Robert Greenwald to represent her.

When hearing her counts, Martinez shook her head and continued to smile at the camera. According to a GoFundMe page set up to help pay for funerals and medical costs, Diana has gone through surgery and will likely remain in the hospital for a few weeks before starting physical therapy.

Police said Martinez had been cooperative with investigators, though they have not yet revealed a possible motive in the deadly attack.

Now, Keyes said, she's having to endure the hard task of explaining to her kids what happened. The woman was not granted bond and according to family members, she has mental health issues. "It doesn't matter anything else", she said through the interpreter.

The neighbours said the Spanish-speaking family had moved to the community recently, and their children seemed happy playing with other neighbourhood children. "She was good, went to our church last weekend, she was there with us".