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Sunday, August 7, 2016

Bastrop man killed himself and three others

Alejandro Martinez, left, and his father, Salvador Martinez, right, are shown after separate arrests in 2013. Both men later took their own lives.
The man responsible for the horrific murder-suicide that left four dead two weeks ago at a Bastrop apartment complex had lost his own father three years ago in a suicide that made headlines.
Shortly after 6 p.m. July 23, Alejandro Martinez, 20, got into a fight with his girlfriend Erica Rodriguez, 21. He grabbed a rifle and shot the woman, her friend Paula Nino, 20, and his 3-year-old son outside their apartment on Childers Drive, police said. He then committed suicide by a gunshot to the head, according to preliminary autopsy results.
Three years earlier, Alejandro Martinez’s father, Salvador Martinezstole a Capital Metro bus in Austin, drove it to Bastrop and shot himself in the head in the parking lot of an AutoZone.
Salvador Martinez, who had worked for Cap Metro, hijacked the bus with a weapon in April 2013 and led Austin police on the 30-mile chase to Bastrop. Two months prior, he had been arrested for driving while intoxicated and evading arrest, according to jail records.
Family members of the Martinezes declined to speak about the incidents, but several people who knew the family confirmed the connection between the two men.
Bastrop County court records show that Alejandro Martinez was arrested for possession of marijuana in 2013. The address listed in court files for that arrest matches the address on Salvador Martinez’s death certificate, also from 2013.
At the Arbors of Bastrop Apartments, after the recent murders, neighbors described the dead as a relatively normal young family.
“They were always happy,” neighbor Angela Myers said. “Never aggressive.”
Sonia McQueen, who was close to Martinez and Rodriguez and spent time with them by the pool, said Alejandro Martinez was a hard-working man, a good father but a heavy drinker. She said he had been troubled about the death of his father.
“He told me once, ‘My father killed himself, does that mean I’m going to kill myself?’” McQueen said in an interview the morning after the shooting.
Bastrop police haven’t released details about Alejandro Martinez’s condition at the time of the murders or whether drugs or alcohol were a factor. More comprehensive autopsy results will be released in the coming weeks, Assistant Police Chief James Altgelt said.

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