Fresno County investigators fear a missing teenager could be hurt, shot, or worse. 16-year-old Sammy Mercado, of Sanger, was last seen on Thursday, April 12th.More >>
FRESNO COUNTY, Calif. (KMPH) -
The search for 16 year old Sammy Mercado of Sanger may be over.
Family members confirm Fresno County Sheriff deputies found his remains in a shallow grave Saturday morning in a grove in south east Fresno County.
The grove is located on Butler between Highland and Thompson.
For 6 months Mercado had been missing after he and 2 others tried to steal marijuana from a grow.
Deputies say they need to complete a DNA test to be sure, but family members of Mercado confirm the teens clothing matches what deputies found in the shallow grave.
Jesse Mercado says, "I knew it would probably come to this, but we hoped and prayed that he would still be alive."
Jesse Mercado, the teen's uncle says the family is relieved but now they are preparing themselves for a new chapter seeking justice against those who killed the 16 year old.
Mercado says, "He put the hurt through each and every one of us, in our hearts, hopefully a justice will be done here but it will be in the kingdom of God when he goes up there."
During press conference Saturday afternoon Sheriff Margaret Mims would not say how deputies were lead to Mercado's remains.
But one can only guess the recent arrest of 21 year old Ernie Chanmany may have had something to do with it.
On October 6th, Chanmany was picked up by a Utah Highway Patrol trooper.
The 21 year old was driving with about 100 pounds of high grade marijuana inside his car.
Chanmany was wanted for Mercado's murder after Fresno County deputies say Mercado and 2 others tried to steal marijuana from a grove back in April.
Mercado was hit, and was left behind by his friends, and had been missing till this morning around 11:30.
The 16 year olds family is grateful to detectives for their hard work.
Erica Mercado Camarena says, "Having this confirmation is bitter sweet, in one hand it came to tragic end, we can hopefully have some closure and bring Sammy home and give him a proper burial that he deserves."
KMPH News and KMJ Radio will air a live, one-hour, "Digital Town Hall Meeting" that deals with "Measure G", the ballot measure that Fresno's voters will decide. Measure G asks Fresno's voters to decideMore >>
KMPH News and KMJ Radio will air a live, one-hour, "Digital Town Hall Meeting" that deals with "Measure G", the ballot measure that Fresno's voters will decide. Measure G asks Fresno's voters to decide whether to "privatize" trash pick-up in Fresno.More >>