Garner mom killed in home invasion was shot seven times
Posted June 20, 2013
Raleigh, N.C. — A Garner woman who was killed along with her husband during a home invasion six months ago was shot seven times, according to an autopsy report released Thursday by the state Office of the Chief Medical Examiner.
Maria Saravia Mendoza, 34, of 708 Colonial Drive, suffered several gunshot wounds to her back, as well as wounds to her left buttock, right knee, right hand and lower abdomen, the report stated.
The bullets tore through her right lung, heart, liver and left kidney, the autopsy found.
Mendoza's husband, Jose Samual Flores Mendoza, 34, was also killed in the Jan. 5 attack, although an autopsy report has not been released in his death.
Investigators have said the couple were unintended victims of a dispute between two rival gangs and that the target had lived in the house in 2011 prior to the Mendozas moving there.
According to search warrants in the case, deputies found Maria Mendoza dead in the kitchen and her husband dead on the couch. The couple's 3-year-old son was also found in the home but was not physically harmed.
Investigators found throughout the home dozens of shell casings from a .45 caliber handgun and a 7.62mm rifle, which helped them link the crime to two teenagers who were arrested in the case.
Isrrael Vasquez, 16, and a 15-year-old boy are awaiting trial on multiple charges, including two counts each of first-degree murder, conspiracy to commit murder and one count of first-degree burglary.