Connecticut mother and son arrested in death of son's wife

STAMFORD, Connecticut (WABC) -- A mother and son from Connecticut have been arrested in the death of the son's wife last year.

Olga "Iris" Lopez, 36, was found unconscious in her Stamford apartment on November 26, 2018, after police responded to the report of a possible overdose.

The victim lived with her husband, 43-year-old Hector Lopez, and her mother-in-law, 60-year-old Mercedes Martinez, at the time of her death.

Authorities say Martinez and her son were aware of the victim's condition and failed to provide emergency care.

"This defendant let his wife literally die in their apartment, he left her there 15 hours without calling 911 or giving her any appropriate care," a prosecutor said. "He was worried that if police were called to the scene, he would be blamed for the numerous bruises that were found on this woman's body."

The victim's sister spoke out on Monday as the two suspects appeared in superior court.

"There is no reason why my sister is not here today, she could have gotten the medical attention that she needed and she would still be here," Rosie Estrella said.

Following an investigation by the Stamford Police Bureau of Criminal Investigations, it was determined that failure to provide medical care to the victim was the direct cause of death.

Martinez and Lopez were both charged with first-degree manslaughter and three counts of risk of injury to a minor.

Prosecutors claim the couple's three children -- ages 5, 11 and 13 -- were in the home at the time.

"It's awful to think they lost their mom and now they are losing their father," Estrella said.

Martinez was also charged with second-degree tampering with evidence and hindering prosecution, and Lopez with two counts of criminal attempt at tampering with a witness.

After court on Monday, family and friends from both families shouted at each other and had to be kept apart by court officers.

The mother and son are being held on a $1 million bond.

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