(CBS) — A mother, desperate to find her son’s killer, says she’s done waiting for police to solve the crime.
More than two years after her son, Harry Rodriguez, was shot at his own birthday party, Elizabeth Ramirez is joining forces with others to get answers and action.
CBS 2’s Dana Kozlov reports.
Ramirez keeps a tribute to her son in her living room. It helps her remember him but doesn’t ease her pain.
In October 2011, her 23-year-old son, Harry Rodriguez, was at his own birthday party on Chicago’s Northwest Side when a masked gunman walked in and started shooting.
Rodriguez, a college student and full-time worker, dove to shield his cousin and her child, saving them.
That doesn’t give his mother any peace. Neither does the fact that his murder remains unsolved. Ramirez says police initially told her it would be wrapped quickly. And recently, she even got information about a possible suspect, which she passed on to police.
“To this day they have not questioned him,” the mother says.
Help then arrived in the form of businessman Robert Torres, who saw her Facebook posts.
“I just was compelled to call her. It was heartfelt,” he says.
He introduced her to activist Robert Renteria. They’ve started Parents for Peace and Justice, with other mothers hoping to keep pressure on police.
“These voices of these ladies should not be silent voices,” Renteria says.
Chicago Police Sgt. Tom Mitchell says Rodriguez’s case is still open and under investigation, but he can’t discuss details. He adds police understand parents’ frustrations.
In the meantime, Robert Renteria hopes to raise money to hire a private detective for this case.
The first fundraiser for Parents for Peace and Justice is Saturday March 8 from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. at 2366 N. Neva Ave. in Chicago. For more information, contact From the Barrio Foundation’s Robert Renteria at 312-933-5619 or visit the website at www.fromthebarrio.com
The foundation provides books and educational materials to schools and groups to help at-risk kids and adults find a way out of gangs and life on the street.