MIAMI (CBS4) – A grieving Miami family is asking for the public’s help after their 17-year-old loved one was shot and killed alongside a cemetery last September.
And now Miami Police are releasing a photo and a flyer of a “person of interest” in this 8-month-old case.
Lead homicide detective Frankie Sanchez says that “person of interest” is 49-year-old Miguel Carvajal, who disappeared from his Miami home after the shooting and who may have fled to Bolivia, where he used to live.
Sanchez told CBS4’s Peter D’Oench that Carvajal may have been the shooter: the person who fired into a group of five teenagers who had been involved in an argument by a cemetery at 9:15 p.m. on September 10th, 2011.
Sanchez says the victim, Armando “Armandito” Martin, was not the intended target. He says Carvajal is the stepfather of one of the teens who was involved in the argument.
Martin died after being shot in the back. A 2nd teenager who was shot has recovered from his wounds.
At a news conference at Miami Police headquarters, Martin’s mother Elena clutched a photograph of her son and shed tears as she said through a translator, “I feel very sick and very bad. I am heart sick. He was intelligent. Please call Police. We want justice.”
“Armandito was a very good kid,” said his cousin James Martin. “He was very smart. He wanted to be a doctor. He wanted to be a surgeon. He was an honor student.”
Sanchez described him as “an average teenager” who had not been in any serious trouble.
“It’s devastating to lose someone who is only 17,” said James Martin. “He had his whole life ahead of him. It is very hard. I feel very said. Someone who was just 17 lost his life over nothing. It’s really hard. The person who did this is on the loose.”
Martin hopes someone will call police with information.
“It would help heal the wounds,” he said. “It would bring closure to this case. I want to say to everyone out there if they are watching this story to call if you have any information, no matter how small, to call Miami-Dade Crimestoppers. Every night I think of him, every day I think of him.”
“What concerns me is that essentially people who take the law into their own hands and take the life of a teenager,” said Detective Sanchez, “is uncalled for.”
If you can help Miami Police, call Miami-Dade Crimestoppers at (305) 471 – TIPS (8477).