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May 23, 2013 10:53 PM by Tony Spehar - tspehar@koaa.com

Family of murdered Springs teen still waiting for justice 16-years later

The family of Steven Eugene "Gino" Romero, murdered in Colorado Springs 16-years ago, is still waiting for justice.

Just after midnight on May 24, 1997 Romero was killed while riding in the back seat of a car during a drive-by shooting near the intersection of Lelaray St. and Circle Dr. Colorado Springs Police believe Socorro Gutierrez and Vinnicio Martinez fired 25-rounds into the car believing it was filled with rival gang members. Gutierrez and Martinez had never been caught while two other men, Juan Candelaria and Ernie Medina were convicted in connection to the murder.

On Thursday Gino Romero's mother Jennifer held her annual vigil at the scene were here son was killed along with family and friends, including Fourth Judicial District Attorney Dan May. Romero's family lit candles and place flowers on a curb next to the seat where he was shot. Jennifer Romero said her family vowed to hold the vigil every year until Socorro Gutierrez and Vinnicio Martinez were caught.

Earlier this month there was a strange twist to the case, an obituary for Socorro Gutierrez was published in the Alamosa Valley Courier. The FBI told News 5 they believed the 43-year-old had fled to Mexico. The obituary only stated the Gutierrez had died on April 29 and gave no information about how and where he died. An FBI spokesperson told News 5 that they were unable to confirm that Gutierrez had died.

Jennifer Romero said she was skeptical the Gutierrez was really dead.

"I don't think so, you know, until I have proof he's a wanted man and we'll continue to look and fight for justice," she explained.

At the time Gutierrez's obituary was published the FBI told News 5 they would conduct DNA testing on his cremated remains to try and confirm whether he had died or not.

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