Melrose Park Woman Robbed, Fatally Shot In Garage

Woman's husband, son heard the shots and came running, family said

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    A Melrose Park mother of three was robbed and fatally shot to death Tuesday night in her garage, police said. No suspects are in custody. NBC Chicago's Michelle Relerford reports. (Published Wednesday, Jan. 16, 2013)

    UPDATE: Pair Charged in Fatal Shooting

    A Melrose Park mother of three was shot to death Tuesday night in her garage, police said.

    Maricela Vera, 41, was robbed and shot on the 1800 block of North 21st Avenue, police said, and taken to Gottlieb Hospital where she died around 8 p.m.

    "This is horrible," neighbor Terry Baffa said as she burst into tears. "We don't have things like this happen around here."

    Vera's daughter, Jackson, said the family needs time to heal. "It's so sudden. We just need time to mourn right now."

    Jackson Vera says her father and 12-year-old brother heard shots fired from the garage, ran out and found Vera.

    Police on Wednesday combed the neighborhood for any trace of the suspect.

    "They're scared, people I know are scared now," neighbor Linda Olivera said. "They have to lock the doors and look around now."

    "I'm thinking maybe I could've helped if I left the drapes open," Baffa said, crying. "Maybe if they would have seen the light, maybe they wouldn't have bothered her."

    Police said it's unclear if one person was involved or more.

    Editor's Note: This report was originally published on Wed., Jan. 16, 2013.