No charges have been filed against the husband of a mother found slain along with her two daughters in their northwest Miami-Dade house who was questioned by authorities but was released Thursday, police said.
Alberto Sierra is not being named a person of interest in the deaths of Gladys Machado and her 4- and 8-year-old daughters, Miami-Dade Police said.
Sierra voluntarily appeared at Miami-Dade Police headquarters Wednesday and left voluntarily Thursday, police said.
The bodies of Machado and her daughters Julia and Daniela Padrino were found Tuesday in a closet at the home in the 7300 block of Northwest 4th Street, police said. Police said they appeared to have been murdered but haven't given the cause of death.
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Family members are distraught and asking that the person who killed them be found. Machado's stepmother, Elma Martinez, who raised her since she was 9, said she doesn't know how the 29-year-old woman and her daughters were killed.
The woman who discovered their bodies lived in an efficiency in the house. The woman, who did not give her name, said she was so shocked that all she could remember was seeing the girls' blond hair.
“They were little, innocent, little angels, they didn't behave bad, they were good girls, they were beautiful, they would come here, laugh and play,” said Machado's half-sister, Natalie Machado-Martinez.
She said Machado had distanced herself since she married Sierra in October 2011.
Neighbors said Machado was living with Sierra, a man with a long criminal history who she accused of domestic violence in 2010, according to court and Miami-Dade Corrections records. That case was later dismissed and she ended up marrying Sierra last year.
According to court records Machado divorced the father of her three children, who included the two girls that died and a 6-year-old boy who police said was found alive elsewhere.
While police have said they are not naming Sierra a person of interest, the children's father, Michael Padrino, wasn't comfortable with him. In a letter asking for custody of his kids, Padrino said that Julia told a teacher that Sierra bit her, adding that he believed that their lives were in danger.
“I'm begging on the mercy of the courts to help me and my children,” Padrino wrote.
The petition was denied and the children were placed with Machado, who had just married Sierra.