WORCESTER - A baby found in a car seat in the middle of Lovell Street late Saturday night led police to a gruesome discovery in a nearby apartment: One man was dead and two women, including the baby’s mother, had life-threatening injuries, police said. All three were tied up, police said.
On Sunday night, police identified the man as Javier Maldonado, 32, of 326 Lovell St., and said the cause of death was unknown. An autopsy was scheduled for Tuesday.
Both women - one 36 years old and the other 18 - were in critical condition Sunday night, police said. Maldonado and the 36-year-old woman were a couple, according to police.
The 18-year-old is the mother of the 3-month-old boy found in the street, according to police. She is related either to Maldonado or the other woman.
Police received a call at 11:50 p.m. Saturday from a person driving along Lovell Street who reported seeing a baby in an infant car seat in the road.
Police began looking for the baby’s parents and were told to head to 326 Lovell St.
“Police knocked on several of the doors to that apartment but did not receive an answer,’’ police said in a news release. “Police heard sounds of a person in distress inside the apartment so a forced entry was conducted.’’
Officers found a man and woman lying on the apartment floor. They searched the residence and found the second woman.
The women were taken to nearby hospitals with what investigators called serious injuries.
Maldonado died from injuries inflicted in an attack, police said.
All three victims lived on the first floor.
“Based on our preliminary investigation, we do not believe this is a random act,’’ Police Chief Gary J. Gemme said.
Police would not discuss any details of what caused the injuries.
The nature of the fatal injury to Maldonado was also not disclosed.
The baby was taken to a hospital for evaluation. He was unhurt and is in the custody of the state Department of Children and Families, authorities said.
Police also corralled a pit bull inside the apartment.
Neighbors said they heard sirens late into the night, but did not know what had happened inside the home. Many were concerned for their safety.
One woman, who did not want to be identified, said a man lived on the first floor, while the other two floors of the three-story building were unoccupied. She said cars pulled up to the house frequently.
Another neighbor called the home “trouble’’ and said she stayed away.
Many other residents, however, said the building had been relatively quiet over the past several months. They were not well acquainted with the residents. One woman said the residents kept to themselves.
Detectives, along with the crime scene unit, are investigating.
Anyone with information may send an anonymous text to 274637 beginning with TIPWPD, submit an anonymous message online via www.worcesterma.gov/police, or call the Worcester police Detective Bureau at 508-799-8651.
Maldonado’s death is the fifth homicide in Worcester this year.
“I’m concerned about the number of homicides we’ve had this year,’’ Gemme said. “We’re on about the same pace we were in 2004, when there were 11 homicides in that year.’’
Some killings can be prevented, such as those caused by gun violence, but others are hard to prevent no matter what strategies are implemented, the chief said.
“We have multiple resources put into this investigation,’’ Gemme said. “Hopefully, we will get some information and we will be able to make an arrest.’’