DETROIT (WJBK) - The family of Jalen Hogue is still waiting for justice. The 18-year-old was murdered only days before his birthday.
"The chain is broken. Life will never be the same. He would have turned 19 and instead we buried him on his birthday," says his mother, Georgette Goodwin.
On Memorial Day morning this year, his body was discovered inside his home on Mansfield between Midland and Pilgrim on the city's west side. He had been shot in the back of the head and laid on the air mattress where he had been sleeping. Police did not find any signs of a struggle, and it's believed someone entered the house through the back door.
"We don't know all the details. We know his killer murdered him from behind and didn't even look him in the eye," says his stepfather, George Reed Jr.
Jalen's mother says her son moved out of her house in January and into the home Mansfield. She says the only other person there that morning made a trip to the store, and she believes that's when the killer took her son's life. When the roommate returned from the store the fire alarm was going off and he saw smoke. It appears the killer tried to set Jalen's body on fire and break his phone.
Jalen was one of 12 brothers and sisters.
"I'm angry but I have to be strong, knowing he's walking around it's unfair," his mother says.
Following the murder, police brought in one person for questioning but no charges were ever filed. Others have also been questioned, but not arrested. This makes it impossible for this grieving mother to find any closure.
"I want the person to rot in jail. I want them to feel the pain I feel knowing my son is not here," she says.
If anyone has information about what happened to Jalen, you're asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-SPEAK-UP. There is a $2,500 reward -- and you will remain anonymous.