When a 36-year-old mother returned to her Albuquerque home with her three children, she found her ex-boyfriend was waiting there with a gun.
45-year-old George Daniel Wechsler proceeded to open fire on the woman and her children – two boys of ages 9 and 5, and a 6-year-old girl. Wechsler then turned the gun on himself, according to Albuquerque Journal.
Law enforcement officials explained that the woman had recently called off her relationship with Wechsler. She reportedly requested that he not contact her or the children anymore.
After the woman told Wechsler he could not come and give Christmas presents to the children, he broke into the woman's home and waited for them there.
Police chief Gorden Eden said during a news conference on Tuesday morning that the mother had managed to pull one of the children from the house after the shooting.
“We know that the mother was attempting rescue on one of the children while she was critically injured herself,” Eden said.
Tragically, her efforts were not enough. One child died at the scene while the other two died in the hospital and in the ambulance.
The mother is still in critical condition and is being treated at the University of New Mexico Hospital.
When the authorities arrived at the house in the 1500 block of Stagecoach Lane SE, Wechsler was unconscious. He was taken to the hospital, but he later died.
“The offender did ask the female victim if he could come over to the house to bring the children Christmas presents, and she denied,” said police spokesman, Fred Duran, on Tuesday at a news conference. “She said she did not want him in the house, she did not want contact with him. And we want to reiterate very clearly that she has asked this male several times not to contact her and not to come to her house.”
Duran continued by saying, "The one and only witness to what happened is not in a position to provide us with that information."
Albquerque Mayor Richard Berry held a press conference in order to offer his thoughts on this horrific crime.
"We lost three of our angels in a senseless and tragic act of violence last night," Mayor Berry said.
Watch Mayor Berry's news conference below:
Our thoughts and prayers go out to the family in this difficult time.
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[H/T Albuquerque Journal]