NEWTON — Family members of Bobby "Spider" Flores, 53, took to social media to mourn the loss of a man who died following an altercation on New Year's Eve in Newton.
"My father, Robert Samuel Flores Sr (Spider) has been brutally murdered by a family member on New Year's Eve. He was protecting his home," wrote Robert Flores Jr. on a gofundme page dedicated to assisting the family with funeral expenses. "This is a very tragic incident that has us all greatly upset."
Robert, or Bobby, Flores Sr.'s Facebook page began filling with notes of mourning and remembrance in the early morning hours of Jan. 1.
Police confirmed Flores Sr. as the victim via text to the Newton Kansan at 9:55 a.m. Jan. 1. He died as the result of an incident under investigation that began at with a 911 call at 10:27 p.m. Dec. 31. At that time Harvey County Communications received a call via 911 reporting a disturbance in the 300 block of SE Fourth. A female told dispatchers she was involved in a physical disturbance with a male subject.
A later call from a witness advised there was another man on the ground who was bleeding. Officers arrived on the scene and found Flores Sr. down on the sidewalk. Officers attempted life-saving measures, but he was later pronounced dead at the scene.
Witnesses gave a description of a suspect. Andrew Martinez, 35, of Newton, was apprehended on foot in the area and booked into the county detention center on charges of first-degree murder and knowing or reckless bodily harm to a family member. According to Erin McDaniel, director of communications for the city of Newton, a variety of other charges including domestic battery are possible as well.
McDaniel told The Kansan that Flores Sr. and Martinez lived in the same house, and got into a fight that spilled out onto the lawn on New Year's Eve. Martinez received treatment for a broken hand from Newton Medical Center before he was booked into jail. Alcohol is believed to be involved.
Bobby Flores was a 1985 graduate of Newton High School, known as a slo-pitch softball player who played on multiple teams in multiple tournaments.