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3 decades later, family still searching for answers

DENVER- Helen Molina has just one wish - closure in her life.

For that to happen, she says she must find her son's killer. The problem is the murder happened 31 years ago.

"In 31 years, one day has not passed that I haven't shed a tear for him, not one day," said Molina.

Detectives have no suspects. The murder is considered a cold case because it hasn't been solved and officers have no tips.

Molina's son, 14-year-old Marty Martinez, was shot as he sat on a porch outside a party on Clay Street near W. 35th Avenue in Denver on July 21, 1976.

Martinez was walking home about 11:30 p.m. after spending an evening at Elitches. He stopped at the party to talk with former neighbors.

Neighbors told investigators there were 30 to 40 people at the party.

Martinez was at the party for only a few minutes when detectives believe a group of people running by fired several shots at party goers on the front porch.

Martinez was hit, but investigators do not have information to believe that he was an intended target.

Detectives believe people in the group who fired the shots were kicked out of the party earlier in the evening.

At the time of the murder, witnesses would not tell investigators who shot Martinez.

"The original investigators found that a lot of the witnesses were not cooperative," said Denver Police Department Cold Case Detective Ben Trujillo. "We're hoping that they are cooperative today."

"Time in a cold case investigation is a friend to a homicide investigation because relationships change and suspects have new allies or their old allies are no longer protecting them," said Det. Trujillo.

Molina, who is battling cancer, says despite the passing of so many years she desperately wants to catch her son's killer.

"It gives me hope to find out who did this to me and my family cause life has been so hard without him and it doesn't get easier. It is not true that time heals because it's never healed my heart, it's just as broken then as it is today," Molina said.

Detectives say that if they do not get a tip on the case, the murderer could remain free forever.

If you have any information that might help police, call 720-913-STOP (7867). Your tip could be worth a cash reward. You do not have to leave your name.

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