Records: Mom solicited men to sexually assault daughter, 10

FILE - In this Thursday Aug. 25, 2016 file photo, from left to right, Nicole Maldonado, Myriah Flores, and her mother Sharlene Benavidez attend a candlelight vigil for 10-year-old Victoria Martens at the apartment complex, in Albuquerque, N.M., where the young girl lived and was killed.  The mother of Victoria Martens told police she sought men online and at work to sexually assault her daughter before her death, according to warrants obtained by the Albuquerque Journal. Michelle Martens told police she had set up encounters with at least three men to sexual assault her daughter whose brutal death spark vigils and outcry across New Mexico.  (Jim Thompson/The Albuquerque Journal via AP,File)
FILE - In this Thursday Aug. 25, 2016 file photo, from left to right, Nicole Maldonado, Myriah Flores, and her mother Sharlene Benavidez attend a candlelight vigil for 10-year-old Victoria Martens at the apartment complex, in Albuquerque, N.M., where the young girl lived and was killed. The mother of Victoria Martens told police she sought men online and at work to sexually assault her daughter before her death, according to warrants obtained by the Albuquerque Journal. Michelle Martens told police she had set up encounters with at least three men to sexual assault her daughter whose brutal death spark vigils and outcry across New Mexico. (Jim Thompson/The Albuquerque Journal via AP,File)

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — The mother of a 10-year-old New Mexico girl who was found dead and dismembered told police she looked for men online and at work to sexually assault her daughter, according to search warrants obtained by a newspaper.

Michelle Martens told police that she had set up encounters with at least three men before the girl was drugged, raped and killed last month, the Albuquerque Journal reported late Tuesday.

The single mother told investigators she didn’t set up the sexual assaults for the money but did it because she enjoyed watching, according to the warrants. It’s unclear how long she had been arranging meetings before Victoria Martens’ death or if police have identified any of those men.

Police found the girl’s dismembered body inside the apartment she shared with her mother on the day she was expected to celebrate her 10th birthday. The slaying ignited outcry and vigils.

Michelle Martens, Fabian Gonzales, and Jessica Kelley — a cousin of Gonzales’ — have been charged with first-degree murder and aggravated criminal sex penetration of child under 13. Victoria was stabbed and strangled.

Martens’ attorney, Mark Earnest, did not immediately return a phone message from The Associated Press.

Martens, 35, told investigators that one of the men she solicited was a co-worker. Two others she met online, including Gonzales, 31. He was to be the last.

Martens told police she used the dating website Plenty of Fish to look for men to sexually assault Victoria.

Her statement to police is included in nearly a dozen search warrants obtained by the Journal. Investigators sought DNA evidence from the suspects, as well as multiple electronic devices and a camcorder they believed may have been used for sexual exploitation of children.

Investigators are working with federal agencies to determine whether Martens will face federal charges on allegations online activity, Albuquerque police spokesman Tanner Tixier said.

 

 

Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

 

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