Woman killed in murder-suicide was devoted mom, friends say

A man walked into a Loop loan store Friday afternoon and killed his girlfriend who worked there before committing suicide, police said.

CHICAGO (Sun-Times Media Wire) -- Friends of a woman killed in an apparent murder-suicide at a Loop loan store on Friday afternoon say she was a devoted mom who spoke frequently about her four children, the Chicago Sun-Times is reporting.

Authorities have identified the dead as 45-year-old Richard Idrovo and 44-year-old Alma B. Hernandez, according to the Cook County medical examiner’s office. They both lived in the 17700 block of Flannagan Court in Tinley Park.

Police say Idrovo walked into the back of the AmeriCash Loans store about 2:30 p.m. Friday and shot Hernandez twice.

He then walked back to the front of the store and took his own life, according to Chicago Police Supt. Garry McCarthy, who spoke with reporters at the scene on Friday.

“It looks like a murder-suicide right now, domestic-related. Both shot. She’s shot a couple of times, he’s shot once in the head,” McCarthy told reporters at the scene. “We’re checking whether or not there were reports made of a domestic history between a female who works at the location and an ex-boyfriend.”

McCarthy added that a gun was recovered, and that the man had a concealed carry permit, but police were still investigating whether the man was licensed to carry the specific gun that was used.

Autopsies on Saturday ruled Idrovo’s death a suicide and Hernandez’s a homicide.

Neighbors in Tinley Park say they’re shocked.

“I loved Alma and Richard and I’m very upset,” one neighbor, who didn’t want to be named said. “They are two wonderful people and something went wrong,” she said, adding the two lived in the home with Idrovo’s mother.

Molly Surowitz was a co-worker of Hernandez’s at the Baird-Warner office in La Grange. Surowitz said Hernandez had just started working at the real estate office earlier this year, and worked in residential real estate.

“She was a wonderful person and we’re sincerely saddened and our concern is for her children,” Surowitz said on Saturday.

Surowitz said Hernandez spoke of her four children often: “She was just a warm, committed person. She was a great mother. She loved her kids very much.”

It was a scene of afternoon chaos after the shooting. Many workers spilled out of surrounding office buildings to find out what happened. They included Darlene Matos, 25, who until recently had worked for AmeriCash loans and knew one of the employees in the store.

Matos said she worked for AmeriCash Loans for two years before leaving to work for a different loan company located in an office building directly across the street from the strip of stores. Every AmeriCash store she worked at had bullet-proof glass protecting employees, she said.

“When you work in this business, people come in off the street and you never know who’s coming in,” she said.

Jennifer Kerrigan, 53, a legal assistant at a law firm in the same office building across from the AmeriCash store, said she came outside for a cigarette just before 3 p.m. and saw police swarming the AmeriCash store.

“I’ve worked in this building 20 years, and nothing like this has ever happened,” Kerrigan said.

Besides AmeriCash, the strip of stores includes a Chicken Planet, Dunkin Donuts, Downtown Tobacco, Tokyo Lunchboxes Catering and Taco Burrito King.

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