Texas Family Found Asphyxiated
January 27, 1999
FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) -- A man accused of abusing
his two sons died along with the boys, his wife and their dog in an old
Chevy with a hose running from the exhaust pipe into the car.
Police are investigating the case as a murder-suicide
after finding the family Tuesday. The parents were identified as Armando
Nunez, 33, and Valree Nunez, 28, a sales clerk. Their children were
Curtis, 7, and Robert, 4.
Molestation suspected in family
January 27, 1999
FORT WORTH, Texas (UPI) Police are investigating the
connection between the apparent murder-suicide of a family of four and
allegations that the father was suspected of physically and sexually
abusing his sons.
Child Protective Services spokeswoman Marleigh
Meisner says a probe was launched on Jan. 11 after the alleged physical
abuse came to their attention. The boys also told CPS workers they were
sexually molested by their father.
The bodies of Armando Jose Nunez, his wife, Valree
Lea Nunez, and their two young sons were found Tuesday inside the family
car with a hose leading from the tailpipe to the interior.
Texas family found dead
Authorities suspect that a
suicide pack between a married couple led to the death of Armando Nunez,
his wife Valree, their two sons Curtis, 7, and Robert, 4, and the family
The whole group was found on January 27, 1999, inside the family
Chevy that was parked behind the new duplex where they lived, on a hill
in a blue-collar Fort Worth neighborhood.
Police found freshly used
hamburger wrappers, a bottle of whiskey and cigarettes inside the car.
There were pillows in the back for the children.
Police say when they
arrived, the family car was covered with a tarp. Under the tarp, police
found a hose attached to the cars muffler and it ran into the window of
Richard Carlberg of the Fort Worth Police Department says,
"Momma wasnt forced in there. They were drinking and smoking
cigarettes and there was no sign of trauma or she was forced or held in
there." Police suspect Valree was with Armando Monday when he
bought a tarp and the hose that would carry carbon monoxide into the car
and kill the family of four.
Neighbors said they didn't
realize there was trouble in the family until Nunez's Jan. 11 arrest on
an outstanding traffic warrant. That same day, state workers began
investigating his sons' complaints that he had physically and sexually
abused them. Marleigh Meissner, a spokeswoman for Child Protective
Services, said Ms. Nunez kicked her unemployed husband out, sent the
children to live with relatives and changed the locks on the house. Ms.
Meissner said the investigation into the abuse charges had not been
Problems surrounded the Nunez
family. Child Protective Services was investigating them. CPS says it
was investigating allegations the boys father sexually and physically
abused them. Caseworkers say the boys mother was cooperating. CPS
spokesperson Marleigh Meisner says, "When she learned of sexual
abuse allegations, she was horrified. She changed the locks on the doors.
She ordered the husband to move out of the home."