Weeks after son’s shooting death, Denver mom’s home burglarized

Local News

DENVER (KDVR) — A mother in Denver grieving the loss of her son killed in a shooting was the target of thieves who broke into her home while she visited his grave.

“We went to the cemetery to visit my son’s grave,” said Maria Rodriguez, whose son, Erik Sarmiento Rodriguez, was killed in October.

“When we came back home, we found everything inside destroyed. We didn’t know what happened,” Rodriguez said.

“They took some watches I had on my dresser, rings, a bracelet that used to belong to my son,” Rodriguez added.

She said mostly jewelry was missing, but something else was gone — something that offered support after her son’s death: “all the money that had been donated to us after my son’s death to pay for his funeral,” Rodriguez said.

Funds from a plate sale and personal donations that were collected was all gone.

“It was between $14,000 and $15,000. My sister alone donated $8,000,” Rodriguez said.

Denver Police are investigating the home burglary and have said so far they know an unidentified suspect forcibly entered the home and took these items.

“It feels like an insult to what we’re already going through,” Rodriguez said.

Sarmiento-Rodriguez, 19, and another person were killed Oct. 27 in a shooting in Commerce City. Police have identified a person of interest in that case.

In east Denver, Rodriguez said her home doesn’t feel like a safe place to be anymore.

“In the 18 years that I’ve been living in this house, nothing like this has ever happened,” Rodriguez said. “I used to be able to sleep with my front door wide open.”

Rodriguez’s family has created a GoFundMe account to help recover some of the money taken in the burglary.

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