Police released the identities of the family of four found dead inside their Upper West Side apartment on Monday—as more information emerges.
The NYPD identified Edison Lopez, 41, as the father, who allegedly stabbed his partner, identified as Alexandra Witek, 40, to death, along with their two sons, Lucien Lopez, 3, and Calvin Lopez, 1. Police have yet to officially rule the case a murder-suicide, although say that is the likely cause.
Police and neighbors said the grisly discovery was made on the fourth floor of 328 West 86 St. at approximately 2:56 p.m. after the children’s grandfather, a superintendent of a nearby building, was unable to gain access to the premises. The concerned relative was reportedly able to unscrew the door’s peep hole where he spotted Witek’s body.
Firefighters then broke into the home and discovered Witek deceased beside the bodies of her two children in the hallway in what is being described as an extremely bloody scene.
Police sources said that the youngest Lopez was stabbed multiple times all over his body while the older son had stab wounds to the torso. Witek also had several stab wounds along with her throat slit. A kitchen knife was found beside their bodies. Cops also discovered Lopez with a single slice wound to the neck beside another knife. The door to the horror scene was locked from the inside and police say there was no sign of forced entry.
According to locals, Edison Lopez, who hailed from Venezuela, served as the building’s superintendent for many years and took over the position from his father. However, he had just received a new job upstate and was getting ready to move out.
“He was going to Westchester somewhere, he was going to be a super of a bigger building. He has been here his whole life, we were going to miss him,” resident of the building Jeff Kimmel said. “I think because his family was growing he wanted a bigger space.”
Police sources said that they are investigating if the new job could have been a motive for the heinous act. According to those with knowledge of the investigation, Lopez and his family were scheduled to be out of their apartment by Sept. 1, yet the employer in Hastings, Westchester, was said to not be ready for them until later in the month. Still, locals say Lopez showed no signs of strife, with his kids even taking place in a playdate with neighbor’s children that same day. Lopez was present at the playdate.
Kimmel said he had known Lopez for the better part of two decades. He described him as kind and friendly, and, if true, couldn’t imagine why he would kill his family.
“I always thought he was a really good guy. I’m telling you I have known him since he was like 20 years old. He was always smiling, always saying hello. We shoot the breeze here and there,” Kimmel said. “I last saw him probably on Thursday or Friday.”
Flora, a nearby resident who didn’t want to provide her last name, said she was shocked to hear of the incident.
“I feel for everybody, I feel for the family. I have lived here for forty years and have never seen anything like this,” Flora said, with tears in her eyes.
The medical examiner removed the bodies from the scene Monday evening. The autopsies are currently being conducted.