Who killed Manuel Gonzalez in 1994?
Gonzalez shot, killed execution style
A Houston family has spent 18 years without justice. Police are hanging onto a clue that could help them catch a killer.
"I just keep to myself about my dad," said Manuel Gonzalez Jr.
Eighteen years after the father he never knew was killed, Gonzalez Jr., 19, still has so many questions.
"How did they go on their whole lives knowing they killed him, and they are still out there?" he wondered.
Manuel Gonzalez served his country in Desert Storm, had plans to become an architect and worked as a security guard to support his family.
Hermelinda Gonzalez said her son was very caring, had many good friends and was a good student. On Jan. 26, 1994, he went to work at the Nordling Chateau Apartments and never came home. The 25-year-old armed security guard was murdered, shot execution-style in the back of the head.
Police said they believe the killer overpowered Manuel Gonzalez and used his own gun to kill him.
"It's what we call a neighborhood murder. Everybody in the neighborhood knows about it, but no one is willing to come forward and say absolutely, 'Yes, this is what I know,'" said Sgt. Michael Peters.
Over the years, investigators developed what they hoped would be good leads, but the trail to catch the killer eventually went cold. One of the biggest clues they have is a first name. Witnesses heard someone call the suspect "Chris" as he was getting into a beat-up looking brown Buick. Four other men were inside that car as it drove off.
"We have a circle of people that we're looking at. The name has come up within a few months from the time of the murder, but there's never been enough to file a charge," said Peters.
The name "Chris" was recently brought up when cold case investigators questioned a man. The Gonzalez family hopes detectives are able to drum up some fresh leads.
"I want to know why he did it. Why did he take his life and leave a 1-year-old to grow up without a father?" said Hermelinda Gonzalez.
Manuel Gonzalez Jr. bears a striking resemblance to his dad. He said he feels cheated. All he and his family are asking for is some closure.
"I just don't like to feel hurt, so I kind of ignore it," said Manuel Gonzalez Jr.
Manuel Gonzalez Jr. plans to go back to school and said he want to join the Marines and serve in the military, just like his father.