Cold case: Christopher Pineda’s family continues to search for answers 15 years after Chicago teenager was found dead

CHICAGO (WLS) – The family of a Chicago teenager murdered 15 years ago is making a new effort to recover a cold case.

Cook County criminals joined Christoper Pioneda’s relatives on Saturday in their fight to shut down.

Pineda would have turned 33 on Monday.

It may have been a little over 15 years, but any family that has lost love like the Pineda family lost Christopher cannot go that long to keep them from justice.

Pineda’s family stood at the intersection of 108th Street and Ewing Street on the East Side several times, remembering the place where he was last seen alive 15 years ago.

“We want to give this case all the attention it deserves,” said Monica Sanchez, Pineda’s niece.

She was still a girl when her uncle went missing and was later found murdered.

Now Sanchez is an adult, but her uncle’s case is still unsolved.

“They took my grandmother’s son, brother, uncle, friend, they took a lot from them,” Sanchez said.

The family said they stood out at the crossroads, handing out flyers with his face on.

“It’s still an open investigation, it’s still being figured out what happened. Why did this happen? What happened that day,” said George McDaid, chairman of the Cook County Crime Organization.

“No matter how much time passes, we will continue to insist. There will be generations after us who will continue to insist,” Sanchez said.

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In 2007, Pineda, who at the time was attending Whitney Young Magnet School, had just dropped off his girlfriend for work after school. He was supposed to go home from the bus stop at 108th and Ewing Streets, but he never made it.

Instead, investigators found the body of a severely beaten 17-year-old in the Kal Sag Canal in the southern suburbs of Blue Island a week after he disappeared.

Even though the years have passed, the family stood out to honor a life that may not have been fully lived, but was fully loved.

“I do not want to cry. I want to be strong for him and strong for the family because my mom stood here in front of you guys, crying the same thing, asking for help. And I just want something to come out of it,” Sanchez said.

“We depend on the public. She’ll get that piece of information that will help solve the case. It will not come from the public if the police had it or something and there were arrests,” McDaid said.

Sanchez said that every time they do these events with family, friends and even the detectives on his case, it is done with the hope that even one tip to the police or an anonymous call to Crime Stoppers will bring not only justice, but also the closure of this families.

Pineda, the son of Guatemalan immigrants, was the first in his family to graduate from high school and was planning to attend college at the time.

Whitney Young Magnet High School honored Pineda’s family by posthumously awarding him a degree.

“Now everyone is after him who graduated in his honor. They’re like, “This is for him, we did it for him,” Sanchez said.

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