A police officer walks past the house in Riverside where a mother and her… (Glenn Koenig / Los Angeles…)
Selvin Chajon Rodriguez asked the mother of his young children to marry him.
But if she said no, the couple and their son and daughter would "all be laid to rest."
The alleged threats, detailed in court papers filed last week in Riverside County Superior Court, were enough for Laura Reveriano to request a restraining against her ex-boyfriend.
"Selvin called and told me he would follow me to the end of the earth and he would kill the kids if they are not with him and there would be nowhere I could hide," Reveriano wrote in the request for a domestic violence restraining order filed Aug. 27.
But the temporary restraining order she was granted the next day did little good.
Early Thursday, Reveriano, 25, and her children, Selvin Chajon, 4, and Emily Chajon, 1, were found stabbed to death in her home on a quiet cul-de-sac in west Riverside.
Rodriguez, 23, of Riverside, was found minutes later, covered in blood, walking along the 91 Freeway and carrying a knife, police said. When police arrived, Rodriguez ran and was shot by a Corona police officer. He remains hospitalized in critical but stable condition, officials said.
As of Tuesday, the Riverside County district attorney's office had not filed charges, said John Hall, a spokesman for the office.
Riverside Police Lt. Guy Toussaint said that even though Reveriano was in the process of trying to escape from Rodriguez, the restraining order might not have been enough to save her.
"We feel terrible that this incident took place.... But even had that restraining order been in place, it might not have stopped this guy from doing the evil thing that he did," Toussaint said.
A Riverside County judge granted the temporary restraining order Aug. 28, saying Rodriguez had to stay at least 100 yards away from Reveriano and her children and could not contact them, according to court papers. A judge set hearings for child custody and establishing a permanent restraining order for later in September.
Although the temporary restraining order had been granted, it had not been served on Rodriguez, so police weren't involved at that point, Toussaint said.
"It doesn't mean that the restraining order isn't valid from a judge, but it does mean that we can't act on it until he's been served," Toussaint said.
On Aug. 25, Rodriguez took Reveriano and their children to a park. He had flowers and a ring and asked her to marry him, neighbors said. After Reveriano said no, he began threatening her, said Carmela Barrera, who owns and lives in the home where Reveriano rented a room.
Barrera said Reveriano was from a small town in Guerrero, Mexico, and worked at a factory packaging energy drinks, where she met Rodriguez.
In court papers, Reveriano wrote that Rodriguez stole her car key and cellphone the day she turned down his proposal, and she called police. Rodriguez broke a window in the house, sending broken glass flying onto her son, who had been sleeping near the window. The glass cut her son's chest, she wrote.
Rodriguez then called Reveriano repeatedly and sent her a constant stream of threatening text messages, she wrote. He told Reveriano he would "put a knife to [her] waist" and would take the children with or without her, Reveriano wrote.
Reveriano feared Rodriguez would take their children without permission to Oregon or to Guatemala, where he had family, according to court papers.
Neighbors have been shaken by the deaths, said Susana Perez, 29, who lives a few houses away. The residential neighborhood is tight-knit and mostly occupied by families, Perez said. Reveriano and her children had been in the neighborhood only about six months, she said.
"It was a big shocker," Perez said. "We all know each other. It's really always quiet."
Times staff writer Sam Quinones contributed to this report.