An 8-year-old boy slept next to his pregnant mother on the same bed without knowing that she was dead. Ashley M. Garcia, the mother of three from Houston was beaten to death by her 23-year-old boyfriend, Alexis Armando Rojas-Mendez. The alleged killer told the innocent boy that his mother was fast asleep and discouraged him from waking her up, according to 2ClickHouston. Later in the morning, on September 19, 2020, the little boy realized his mother was no more.
The determined boy summoned neighbors to help him wake his mother up. But she had passed away hours earlier, at their apartment in the 5500 block of De Soto Street, Houston.
Ashley Garcia was 27 YO, and family says she was 7 weeks pregnant when she was killed. Police said her 8 YO son found her dead.
Her boyfriend, Alexis Armando Rojas-Mendez, is charged with murder and on the run. Call HPD Homicide at 713-308-3600 with info. https://t.co/JlknF8OPQx pic.twitter.com/QjzpyEBlTu— Pooja Lodhia (@PoojaOnTV) September 24, 2020
The woman, who was seven weeks pregnant, had been declared dead in her home. Investigators found the apartment walls and floors spattered with blood. The documents stated that the woman was found with blunt force trauma to her head and body.
Houston police are on a lookout for the boyfriend who fled before the incident was discovered. According to People, he is now wanted on a charge of murder. The 8-year-old told the police that he witnessed his mother being physically assaulted.
He saw the man beating Garcia with his steel-toe work boots before he left their house. Court documents also claimed that a neighbor saw the man assaulting the mother at a parking lot on 18 September, 2020. The neighbor said that the man tried to force the woman along with her son into the Jeep with him. But she refused. So, he dragged her to her third-floor apartment and committed the heinous crime.
💔 RIP, Ashley Garcia 💔 | This young mother was pregnant when police said her 23-year-old boyfriend, Alexis Armando Rojas-Mendez, beat her to death with steel-toe boots in front of her 8-year-old son.
STORY: https://t.co/YgHpoFH3y3 pic.twitter.com/lnXKBR7qPY— KHOU 11 News Houston (@KHOU) September 25, 2020
According to People, after leaving the scene, he contacted his sisters and asked them for some money. He claimed it was for an “out-of-town job.” But the sisters refused to lend him any money. They also informed the police that he sounded “stressed out” on the phone.
The police have urged the public to pass on any information that would help them capture the criminal. Those with information can contact the HPD Homicide Division at (713) 308-3600 or Crime Stoppers at (713) 222-TIPS.
The grieving family of the mother organized a private funeral. They hope their dear one receives the justice she deserves. “I have so many mixed emotions. I am sad, I am angry, I just want justice for her, that’s all I want, I want her to be at peace,” said Garcia’s sister Yessenia, according to 2ClickHouston. She credited her sister for being a great mother and stated that her three kids were similar to her. “You know, those kids are so much like her, it’s crazy,” said Yessenia.
🙏 Keep Ashley Garcia’s family in your thoughts and prayers 🙏 Garcia leaves behind her 8-year-old son who police said may have seen his mother being beaten to death by her boyfriend with steel-toe boots. Alexis Armando Rojas-Mendez has not been arrested. https://t.co/YgHpoFH3y3— KHOU 11 News Houston (@KHOU) September 24, 2020
Similar cases of abuse, especially against women, had seen a sharp increase earlier this year during the lockdown. It seems to have persisted even after it was lifted because many are forced to work from home, leaving victims of domestic violence with no respite from their abusers. A 25-year-old man in Milwaukee killed his partner, Amarah Banks, and strangled their two daughters in February 2020. according to Fox News.
Arzel Ivery, the murderer told the police that he and his partner had issues between them since the death of their infant son in late January. He explained that he killed the partner after their argument escalated to violence. A neighbor stated that they heard the mother begging the man not to kill her.
STILL AT-LARGE | Alexis Armando Rojas-Mendez is charged with murder and is still on the run. He’s accused of beating his pregnant girlfriend to death with steel-toe boots this weekend.
STORY: https://t.co/YgHpoFH3y3 #khou pic.twitter.com/Tuh2oOOKuW— KHOU 11 News Houston (@KHOU) September 25, 2020
Ivery claimed that he killed the girls because he didn’t want them to live without their mother.