BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — Five children are without their mother and young sibling after a heartbreaking situation became the result of domestic violence.
Deputies with the Kern County Sheriff’s Office were dispatched to the 1900 block of South M Street at around 6 p.m. Monday night after receiving a call that someone was shooting inside of a home.
“The RP stating their stepfather is shooting a firearm inside of the residence. Shooting at the RP and sisters who are towards the bedroom,” an emergency dispatcher said.
The caller told dispatch that the gunman was physically attacking another woman inside the home.
“The family is 242-ing each other and one is in possession of a long rifle type firearm in the area 1904 South M,” the emergency dispatcher continued.
KCSO said deputies discovered three victims with gunshot wounds later identified as 30-year-old Luis Carlos Jimenez, 36-year-old April Trujillo Salinas and 17-month-old toddler Mercedes Jimenez, who was identified by family as the couple’s child.
Neighbors say the area is fairly quiet, but with the call Monday night, deputies had the house and area surrounded — and then matters turned worse.
“Suspect may have shot himself,” an emergency dispatcher said.
According to deputies, Salinas and Jimenez were shot and died at the scene from the injuries, and Luis Carlos shot himself and died at the scene. Neighbor Johnny Perez said he is still in shock from the news.
“You cannot imagine what was the reason, or what this little girl did to someone for people to react like that to her, so it’s kind of like [there are] no words for it,” said Perez.
The family of Salinas and 17-month-old Jimenez returned to the home Tuesday, distraught over what appears to be a case of a murder-suicide that stemmed from domestic violence. The Open-Door Network’s Lauren Skidmore said she hopes more victims of domestic violence reach out sooner to avoid such a severe violent situation.
“In this situation, this is the worst-case scenario, especially for that 17-month-old, who had no ability to fight back, who had no ability to really see a future for themselves. No 17-month-old or any child should have to go through this type of violence,” said Skidmore.
The GoFundMe set up on behalf of April and her daughter Mercedes to help with funeral costs can be found here.
And a reminder, if you experience domestic violence, or know someone who has, there is help available. Always call 911 if it’s an emergency, or you can also call The Open Door Network at their 24-hour crisis line at 327-1091 or the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE.