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Police: 10-year-old girl found slain with mom in bloody Las Vegas home was sexually assaulted
LAS VEGAS (AP) ' A 10-year-old girl was sexually assaulted before she died in a bludgeoning attack that also killed her mother and left her father with critical head injuries in a blood-splattered Las Vegas home, police said Thursday.
The discovery that 10-year-old Karla Martinez was sexually assaulted expands the investigation of the brutal attack, Las Vegas police Lt. Clinton Nichols said. Officers went to the home and found the bodies after the girl's 9-year-old brother arrived at school Monday saying that his mom and sister were dead. A 4-year-old boy was also found unharmed in the house.
No suspects have been identified, and Nichols asked for patience, saying rumors were complicating the investigation.
Although police said Monday that evidence didn't suggest an intruder was responsible for the attacks or that a suspect was on the loose, Nichols said Wednesday that investigators hadn't been able to determine exactly what happened in the modest three-bedroom home, or when.
"We've ruled out no one. We are looking at every possibility," he said.
Nichols said Thursday investigators were being slow and methodical.
"We want to do everything right," he said. "This case needs to be solved ' the brutal nature of the attacks on a family in their own home."
Authorities found the girl and the mother, Ignacia Martinez, 38, beaten to death with a blunt instrument in separate bedrooms.
The father, Arturo Martinez, 39, was injured in the living room. The murder weapon has not been identified.
The bodies bore clear evidence of an attack with a blunt object, Clark County Coroner Michael Murphy said. He said the deaths were classified as homicides.
Arturo Martinez remained hospitalized Thursday at University Medical Center in Las Vegas with what authorities initially described as a severe head injury. Police said they weren't immediately able interview him because of his injuries.
The two boys were placed in protective custody with the Clark County Department of Family Services.
Child forensic counselors have spoken with the boys, but Nichols said police haven't questioned the children directly about what happened in the house.
"We're not going to push them," the police lieutenant said. "You can only imagine what they saw."
The sexual assault was reported Thursday by the Las Vegas Review-Journal.