A Texas woman was killed in an apparent murder-suicide two days before Christmas, after going back to a boyfriend her mother has described as abusive.
Witnesses heard screaming and a couple arguing outside a Houston apartment complex on Wednesday just before shots were fired, the Houston Police stated in a press release.
When police arrived, they found Itzell Sanchez, 24, “lying on the ground near the passenger side of a black Ford Mustang,” according to police. She had been shot and killed.
“A male was found in the driver's seat of the Mustang with an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head and a gun in his lap,” police stated.
That male is a 21-year-old who has not yet been identified by law enforcement.
The victim’s mother Claudia Sanchez told local outlet KTRK that her daughter had been in a toxic relationship with her boyfriend, whom she described as abusive.
"He would hit her and make her feel guilty for hitting her," she told the outlet. "We kept telling my daughter to stay away from this guy, he's not good."
She said she regrets not doing more to halt it.
"I regret that. I will all my life because I saw the signs," she said. "I didn't do anything about it."
The mother said that while Itzell and the man had recently broken up, Itzell decided to get back together with him. Claudia told KTRK that she tried to respect her daughter’s decision.
"I saw two people in those black bags and I said, 'Is my daughter in those bags?' and they said yes," she told the outlet.
She described her daughter, an organ donor, as having a “beautiful smile.”
Crime Time is your destination for true crime stories from around the world, breaking crime news, and information about Oxygen's original true crime shows and documentaries. Sign up for our Crime Time Newsletter and subscribe to our true crime podcast Martinis & Murder for all the best true crime content.