A Phoenix family finally had some closure Thursday, 15 years after reporting their teenage son missing.
Police arrested his best friend as the suspect in his murder.
"This is really a story about a group of friends, many of whom kept a secret for 15 years," said Phoenix police Sgt. Steve Martos.
Pete Cadriel was 17 when his family reported him missing.
"We tried to do what we could, eventually it got to the point where we almost stopped," Abraham Santos said.
Santos was only 12 when he lost his brother. He said his mother never gave up. After fighting years to get out-of-state dental records, police confirmed in 2009 what the family had always feared - he was dead.
They matched him to a cold case from 1998 where a body was stuffed in a trash can behind a bowling alley.
Then detectives got a tip that led them to the victim's high school friend Israel Lomeli. Lomeli was arrested Tuesday, March 19.
"He was a friend of the family, he was a part of the family, just one of the guys who was like a big brother," Cadriel's sister Ruth Santos said.
Ruth Santos feels betrayed.
"He'd smile to my face and say, 'One day we're going to find him,'" Ruth Santos said.
Police said Cadriel and his friend broke into a home and stole some vintage weapons and a coin collection. They went back to Lomeli's house, fought over who got what, and then Lomeli shot Cadriel.
"I'd really just love to ask him, 'Why?' man to man. As a best friend, who does that to their best friend?" Abraham Santos said.
For their dad, it's bittersweet because his wife died last year, never knowing the truth.
The high school friend she had over for dinner kept that secret for so many years.
Police said Lomeli stayed pretty much out of trouble after the murder. He was a manager at a Valley carwash, working with the victim's sister.
He's denied any involvement but detectives said they found forensic evidence in his home.
Saturday, August 30 2014 7:17 PM EDT2014-08-30 23:17:41 GMT
A nine-year-old girl accidentally shot and killed her instructor at a shooting range in Arizona earlier this week, and now people are wondering what the right age is for kids to be shooting guns. BuddyMore >>
After a nine year old girl accidentally shot and killed her instructor at a shooting range in Arizona, local shooting range owners and experienced shooters talk about safety measures when out shooting a gun.More >>
Friday, August 29 2014 4:33 PM EDT2014-08-29 20:33:42 GMT
South Carolina Highway Patrol is investigating a fatal wreck on Gun Range Road, between Wire Road and Highway 1.Troopers responded just after 1 p.m, according to the SCHP database.Additional details areMore >>
The Aiken Co. Coroner's Office confirmed Willis L. Purvis, 55, was returning home on his Suzuki motorcycle when he lost control of it, and was ejected. More >>
3933 Washington Road
Augusta, GA 30907