Nearly 18 years after a Valley murder, the mother of a teenage victim is looking for help to find who killed her son.
Cynthia Tapia said she got that one phone call that every parent hopes they will never get on Oct. 2, 1994.
"Saturday evening Carlos called me and asked to stay the night at his friend's," said Tapia.
Tapia said the 2000 block of N. 41st Dr. will always be remembered not just as a house but as the place where her then 16-year-old son, Carlos Paynter, would spend his last night on earth.
"And then I get a phone call at 12:18 a.m. saying that he had been shot," said Tapia.
Police said an older model white pickup truck and a Chevrolet Impala drove by, and someone fired at Carlos.
"The passenger of the Impala put a shotgun out the window and shot my son through the heart," said Tapia.
Investigators have never made an arrest, and nearly 18 years later Tapia and her entire family of five kids and seven grandchildren keep the memory of Carlos alive. Tapia said he was her firstborn child.
"Oh, he was a great kid. Me and him, we grew up together," she said as the tears started to flow. "He had a huge ear-to-ear smile."
The family believes there is still hope that, with the public's help, a young 16-year-old who loved to fish and paint can rest in peace.
"Somebody saw exactly what happened, and also somebody has heard something. Somebody told somebody or bragged about it," said Tapia.
If you have any information about this murder, police ask that you give them a call. You may remain anonymous by calling Silent Witness and could receive up to a $1,000 reward for your information.
The number is 480-WITNESS, 480-948-6377, 480-TESTIGO or toll-free at 1-800-343-TIPS.
Copyright 2012 CBS 5 (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.
Thursday, May 16 2013 2:06 PM EDT2013-05-16 18:06:52 GMT
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