SOUTHWEST MIAMI-DADE(CBS4) – The father of two little girls who were found murdered inside their home, along with their mother, is speaking out for the first time, saying this crime is “unexplainable.”
“It is unexplainable. I have no idea how someone could get something like this in their minds,” said Michael Padrino in an exclusive interview with CBS4’s Peter D’Oench.
It was nearly two weeks ago on the night of November 13th that the bodies of four-year-old Daniela Padrino, six-year-old Julia Padrino, and Padrino’s ex-wife Gladys Del Carmen Sierra were discovered in a closet of their home at NW 4th Street and NW 73rd Avenue.
Miami-Dade Police said all three victims were suffocated with plastic bags and said the mother and oldest daughter were sexually assaulted after they were suffocated.
“I read about this to a certain extent,” Padrino told D’Oench. “I just couldn’t read anymore because it disgusts me. It’s not something any parent would want to listen to.”
Padrino also said he wanted to remember the joy of having the two little girls.
“I mean when I found out, I couldn’t move. I froze completely,” he said. “I miss them a lot. I wish I could have them. I wish I could hold them. Every day I wake up, I wish I could hear them screaming, you know, coming up to me, giving me hugs, giving me a kiss.”
“They were loving,” Padrino continued. “They were always playful. They always had a laugh to them. They were always running around, playing around. It’s been horrendous. It’s not anything anyone wants to go through. I mean it is hard enough losing one child, but now losing two children, it is so difficult. From the day they were born, that’s all I can remember, them laughing, playing.”
But Padrino said he will not fold.
“I stay strong because I have a 5-year-old son Michael Junior and I have another son on the way who we are going to name Christian. He is due by the end of the month,” said Padrino. “So you know it is hard, but I have to move forward for you know, my son Michael, to have a normal life. If I fall, my son is going to go down with me and I can’t have that anymore. I can’t have that.”
Padrino spoke to D’Oench in the living room of his home beside a newly-decorated Christmas tree.
“It’s going to be harder now,” Padrino said. “My oldest daughter’s birthday is the 20th of December. So it’s right before Christmas and that is going to be on my mind, through the holidays. I will think about her running around, through the presents, through the Christmas presents. It is not going to be happy.”
“I thank everyone for their prayers and for you guys giving me space when I needed it, through the grieving and I appreciate that,” Padrino said.”
Padrino has custody of his 5-year-old son and said, “My son is doing good. But it’s a process, a difficult process.”
Michael Junior was not at the Northwest Miami-Dade home during the crime because he was staying with his great grandmother, Padrino said.
Padrino had been involved in a bitter custody battle with his ex-wife when she was living with and later married to Alberto Sierra, who is now accused of murdering the victims after getting into a fight with the children’s mother.
Miami-Dade Police said Sierra confessed to the crimes and they are calling the case one of the more heinous crimes in recent memory in Miami-Dade.
Sierra,28, is facing three counts of first degree murder, one count of sexual battery of an adult and one count of sexual battery of a child below the age of 12. Police said there was no evidence that Sierra had taken drugs and said more charges against him are possible.
In October 2011, the same month that Sierra and Gladys were married, Sierra was reportedly investigated by the state’s child welfare agency after Julia told a teacher that her stepfather had bitten her on the arm.
Padrino asked for sole custody of the children writing a judge that his childrens’ lives were in danger.
“After she got bit, I pursued to get custody of the kids,” Padrino said. “She was bitten by him. Everything is on the records, how and when it happened.”
But the Department of Children and Families closed out its investigation when Sierra was arrested in November of 2011 on charges of possessing a firearm by a convicted felon.
At the time, Sierra and Gladys were living together. According to records, police seized a shotgun, rifle, and ammunition. Sierra’s probation was revoked and he was sentenced to 364 days in a Miami-Dade jail after pleading guilty. He was released from jail in late June of this year.
Sierra has a criminal record dating back to 2005 that includes arrests for assault with a deadly weapon, selling cocaine and the illegal possession of weapons by a convicted felon.
CBS4 news partner The Miami Herald also reported that he had been arrested for domestic battery in 2010 after he reportedly bit Del Carmen Sierra on the forearm and stole her gun.
“How could society have a person like that out on the streets,” said Padrino. “My message is don’t take things lightly, because the slightest little thing could be a big problem.”
Padrino said he was unemployed right now, but was “totally focused” on finding out more details concerning his daughters’ lives while living with Sierra and his ex-wife. He said he hopes to get more records from DCF.
Padrino said Daniela and Julia were buried next to each other.