Girl, 10, drugged, raped, killed
Mum, her boyfriend and his cousin arrested over 'most gruesome act of evil'
A US girl was injected with methamphetamine, sexually assaulted, strangled and stabbed before being dismembered on her 10th birthday, reported local media outlet KOB.
The police found Victoria Martens' body parts wrapped in a blanket and burning in a bathtub in the family's apartment in Albuquerque, New Mexico, on Wednesday.
The girl's mother, Michelle Martens, 35, her boyfriend, Fabian Gonzales, 31, and his cousin, Jessica Kelley, 31, face charges including child abuse resulting in death, kidnapping and tampering with evidence.
Gonzales and Kelley also face charges of criminal sexual penetration of a minor.
"This homicide is the most gruesome act of evil I have ever seen in my career," said police chief Gorden Eden.
It is "a complete disregard of human life and betrayal by a mother".
Martens told police she had met Gonzales online a month ago and that he drugged Victoria so he could calm her down and have sex with her while Kelley watched.
She said Gonzales choked her daughter to death after having sex with her.
Gonzales denied any involvement in the killing, telling police it was Kelley who stabbed and dismembered the girl, reported news station KTLA.
Kelley, who police said had attempted to flee the scene by jumping off a balcony, remains in the hospital.
CNN affiliate KOAT reported that Kelley and Gonzales have extensive criminal records. Martens reportedly had only a traffic citation.
Court records show that Kelly had once acted as a lookout while a woman allegedly raped another inmate with an object at the Metropolitan Detention Center in September 2012, reported local newspaper Albuquerque Journal.
Kelley's grandfather, who spoke to KOB on the condition of anonymity, said she deserved the death penalty even though there is no such law in New Mexico.
"If she in fact did what they said, that would be fine. It would not bother me or the family one bit," he said.