Teenage Girls Found Dead in Renton Home Likely Died Several Days Before Their Father, Police Say


A Renton man may have been alive up to five days after his two teenage daughters died before the bodies of all three were found in their apartment last Saturday, police said.

While it could be months before the causes of death are known, that timeline could help shed light on what happened in the apartment Manuel Gil shared with his daughters. An autopsy on Monday failed to determine how sisters Adriana Gil, 17, Mariel Gil, 16, and their 33-year-old father died, and further laboratory examinations are being done.

Renton police said it appears the girls died around Dec. 5 and their father died around Dec. 10, one day before their bodies were found by their landlord. However, Detective Robert Onishi said "environmental conditions" could have affected that timeline because the interior of the apartment was warm when the bodies were discovered.

A timeline doesn't necessarily tell officials who was responsible, Onishi said. Investigators are looking closely at all possibilities, but further answers most likely will come once the King County Medical Examiner's Office releases a toxicology report and announces official causes of death, he added.

The girls' mother, Betsy Alvarado, who lives in Everett, said the Medical Examiner's Office gave her a similar timeline for the deaths. The office declined to confirm the timeline estimate to The Seattle Times.

The once cheerful sisters began to change drastically between spring and summer of this year, Alvarado said. Adriana had been living with her dad since she was 12. But Mariel started spending more time at their father's house, eventually moving in near the end of last school year. The two followed the Hebrew Israelite faith, while their father followed the Black Hebrew Israelite faith, and Alvarado said they cited religion as their behavior became more rigid.

Around late February or March, the girls told Alvarado they weren't able to see her anymore because she wasn't following God's word the way she should. Alvarado said she went back and forth with them for a few weeks about it.

"I cried so many nights trying to convince them to come back but they felt like if they lived with me they would burn in hell because they wouldn't be able to follow God's word the way they're supposed to," she said.

After receiving numerous calls that the sisters weren't attending school, Alvarado said she called Child Protective Services. It was unclear Friday whether the agency looked into the case.

"I let them know that I had many concerns and that my daughters were not safe," Alvarado said. "[The girls] cut me off," she said. They no longer responded to her and if they did respond it would be with Bible verses.

When Alvarado last saw her daughters around late February she recalls them looking "plump" and healthy, estimating they weighed around 150 pounds. But before they died they were around 100 pounds, she said.

"I just want justice," Alvarado said.

Alvarado had gone to the apartment with Renton police on Dec. 10 because she was concerned after not hearing from her daughters recently. They knocked on the door, but nobody answered.

The next day, landlord Carlo Papini went inside the unit to check on his tenants and found Adriana and Mariel's bodies on the first floor, wrapped in large blankets.

"It was like they went to sleep, and they never woke up," he told The Times.

Police were summoned and officers found the body of their father in one of the upstairs bedrooms.

The two "had their entire lives ahead of them," Alvarado's sister-in-law Jessica Alvarado wrote on a GoFundMe page to support Adriana and Mariel's family. "This news has devastated the entire family, as we cherished them. Both girls were daughters, sisters, cousins and nieces to us."