Relative details horrific moment son finds mom after she was struck by stray bullet
A relative recalled the horrifying moment a teenager found his mother bleeding to death in their Queens apartment, moments after she was struck in the head by a stray bullet inside her bedroom early Wednesday.
Angel Gabriel, 14, burst through the bedroom door of his family’s third-floor apartment on 34th Avenue to find his mom, Bertha Arriaga, face up on the floor, blood pouring from her head.
“He found her breathing, in the blood, on the floor,” said the boy’s uncle, Javier Aguilar, 42. “He ran to daddy and say, ‘Mommy is on the floor!’ Daddy tried to do CPR and she was breathing, eyes open, a lot of blood on her head.”
The family dialed 911 — but by the time police arrived, it was too late. Arriaga was pronounced dead at the scene.
Police believe the 43-year-old mom of three boys was killed by a stray bullet that sailed through her window, which faces 34th Avenue and has an accordion-style security gate and a childproof gate on it.
A single bullet hole could be seen in the lower portion of the glass.
Arriaga, who is originally from Mexico, was in bed at the time when she heard something around 12:45 a.m., Aguilar said.
“Angel tell me she heard some noises, she got up from the bed and looked out the window and she was shot,” the uncle recalled.
Arriaga’s husband, Jorge Aguilar, 56, was home at the time but wasn’t inside the bedroom of the Flushing apartment — located just a block away from the 115th Precinct.
“She was the best wife, the best mom,” Jorge said before choking up.
The heartbroken husband called Javier in the middle of the night in a panic after Arriaga was shot.
“He was in shock,” said Javier, 42, who lives in Bayside. “I say, ‘why is she bleeding?’ He say, ‘I don’t know, I don’t know, come please, quick!’
“We come and my brother was destroyed.”
At least one neighbor described hearing a few men arguing in the street at 34th Avenue and 91st Street before the shot rang out.
“I couldn’t hear what they said, but they yelled and pushed each other,” the neighbor said.
Next-door neighbor Nancy Torres, 32, remembered Arriaga as a devoted, well-liked mom.
“You would see her taking the boys to karate classes, always caring for them,” Torres said. “Beautiful family. He works in the grocery store. Always working.”
She added, “I am scared now. I am shocked that this happened.”
No arrests have been made and the investigation is ongoing, police said.
Share this article:
Source: Read Full Article