Vigil Held For Weston High School Student Killed By Father
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South Florida Crime
FT LAUDERDALE (CBSMiami) – A Weston father killed himself after killing his wife and 17-year-old son and then driving to Tallahassee to attempt to kill his 21-year-old son.
The Broward Sheriff’s Office reported the body of 53-year old Pedro Maldonado was found in Cabot Lodge in Lake City around 2 a.m. on Wednesday, Dec. 4th.
On Tuesday, just before 4:30 p.m. a Sheriff’s SWAT team was sent to a home at 4266 Vineyard Circle in the Courtyard at the Grove community in Weston.
When they made entry into the home, they found the bodies of Maldonado’s wife, Monica Narvarez-Maldonado, 47, and teenage son, Pedro Maldonado, Jr., 17.
Investigators said the elder Pedro killed Monica and Pedro Jr. with a hand-held crossbow. After that, BSO said Pedro Sr. drove to Tallahassee and early Tuesday morning tried to shoot Jose Maldonado, 21, with the crossbow.
BSO said Jose turned and the arrow hit him in the ear. At that point, investigators said the Pedro Sr. began to choke him, but Jose struggled to get away from his dad, who then fled. BSO investigators said Jose didn’t initially report the attack.
Pedro Sr. then traveled to Lake City where he would later slit his own throat.
At a vigil for Pedro Junior in Weston on Wednesday night, his fellow members of the drum line marched up a small hill playing the drums, setting the tone for a somber occasion that included tears, laughter and a celebration of life.
Pedro’s friends remembered his love of The Lord of the Rings, his willingness to help others succeed and his relentless desire to be the best he could be.
“(He was) one of the most talented and respectful kids I’ve ever me,” said friend Jake Carstens.
Carstens said he was at a hockey game last night when he saw the news. He said he couldn’t believe it.
“I don’t think i’m ever gonna make sense of the situation,” Carstens said. “I’m just gonna have to accept it and move on.”
At the vigil, a parade of students shared their thoughts on what Pedro meant to their lives. A teacher from Cypress Bay High School said she was always impressed by Pedro’s gentle nature. She also mentioned how Pedro’s friends were rallying around each other at such a critical time.
“The strength that you all have is amazing,” the teacher said. “No one at your age should have to go through something like this.”
The news of the death spread quickly across social media among students.
“It’s on Twitter and stuff; people just really upset about it,” said student Annie Navarro. “I feel bad an innocent kid like that; he didn’t deserve that.”
At school, Pedro was remembered as someone that everybody liked.
“An amazing, amazing guy,” said classmate Dillon Perez. “He was really nice, really kind and I know the people in band adored this guy. He’ll be very missed.”
Students struggled to make sense of such senseless violence.
“I’m honestly baffled,” said student Shana Popper. “This shouldn’t be happening. I should be going to school to see my classmates, not a missing seat.”
“It shocked me beyond words,” said student Luisa Gamarodrigues. “That’s crazy! How could you kill your own family?”
Neighbors in the usually quiet community were stunned.
“Just unbelievable for the teenager with a whole life to live just taking it away like that; this is terrible,” said neighbor Marie Sabourin. “I can’t even imagine what was happening inside that house.”
Maria Baz said the Maldonado’s were a quiet family that kept to themselves and saw no signs of trouble.
“There was never any yelling,” Baz said, “any argument, the police were never called to their homes.”
According to the Broward Sheriff’s Office, Maldonado told his eldest son he was stressed about finances and the possibility of deportation back to Ecuador.