Illegal Immigrant Accused of Fatally Stabbing Her 4 Children and Husband

At one point, Martinez even gave a "thumbs-up" to the camera during the weird scene, which unfolded Friday morning, just a day after the mother of five was named the only suspect in the fatal stabbings of her husband and four young children.

Isabel Martinez, 33, was arrested Thursday and accused of fatally stabbing her husband, Martin Romero, and four of her children, ranging in age from 1 to 10.

Authorities in Georgia contacted Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), who said that Martinez "is a Mexican national who illegally entered the United States and is in the country unlawfully".

Martinez, who is accused of murdering five people the day before, smiled, gave a thumb's up, bowed for the cameras, and otherwise didn't seem very distressed to be there.

This comes after ICE officials said she entered the US illegally from Mexico.

When offered the choice to be appointed an attorney, Martinez said her attorneys are the people and her faith, according to her translator.

"I'm going to cautious you to cut off the display for the cameras", Judge Michael Thorpe told Martinez.

In addition to the killings, Martinez is also charged with stabbing her fifth child, a little girl, who was airlifted to a hospital and expected to remain hospitalized for two to three weeks.

As she left the courthouse, Thorpe could be heard muttering: "Wasn't that delightful?" This is her first encounter with immigration authorities, and it's not clear how long she has been in the U.S., Cox said.

"What prompts a person to take the life of such innocent children and her spouse is something we may never understand".

Martinez was detained after the bodies were found inside the home in Loganville, about 30 miles east of Atlanta, Gwinnett County Police Corporal Michele Pihera told reporters at the scene on Thursday morning.

Jim Hollandsworth, co-founder of The Path Project, a nonprofit that runs an after-school program that Martinez's children participated in, said the Spanish-speaking family had moved to the largely Hispanic neighborhood just a few months ago.

Diana Romero, 9, was wounded but survived the carnage.

It is unknown if Martinez has officially confessed, but Gwinnett Police Cpl.

"She seemed so normal, like a regular mother", said neighbor Letty Perez.

An immigration hold was also placed on Martinez, but police didn't provide further details. Martinez had called 911 at 4:47 a.m. requesting help.

Early indications are that a knife was used to attack the five, though a medical examiner will make the final determination about the cause of death, she said.

  • Jack Mann