2006_10_55west100.jpgWhen school officials alerted police that 9 year old Mariah Navarro hadn't been in school for two weeks, the police went to her apartment at the Frederick Douglass Houses on 55 West 100th Street, only to find Navarro and her mother Maria Rivera's decomposing bodies. The two bodies were wrapped in blankets and found in separate rooms - Rivera in a bedroom and Navarro in a closet, and police believe the pair were dead for a few days. The apartment's door did not seem to be forced (still locked when police arrived) and the Post reports a bloody hammer was found in the apartment as well.

Neighbors say the mother and daughter moved in six months ago, and two months ago, a man believed to be Rivera's boyfriend started to visit. The police are questioning the boyfriend while also looking for a man who was authorized to pick up Navarro from school, according to the Daily News. Neighbors also said they saw Rivera and Navarro last Friday, and one said she saw the boyfriend on Sunday and that he seemed normal. Orlando Chaparro told the NY Times, “This is one of those very rare public housing buildings in the city; it’s very quiet. We never had any incidents. It’s shocking.”