Parents Pleading for Help to Find Sons Killer

October 14, 2008 7:15:17 PM PDT
The parents of a navy veteran and Merced college student who was murdered last week are pleading for the public's help in finding his killer.29 year old Michael Riley was found shot to death outside a Merced apartment complex last Tuesday.

Michael Riley served in the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq only to be murdered in his hometown. Now his parents are hoping someone in this community can offer them some answers.

Michael Riley's parents are left with questions and haunting memories of the night their son was killed.

Earl Riley said, "It was the hardest thing I ever had to do was wake his mother up and tell her that Mike had been shot."

Earl Riley got the call from one of Michael's friends last Tuesday night just hours after he left his parents house following a home cooked meal and a hug from his mother.

Marylene Riley said, "We embraced and I kissed him and told him I loved him, and he said I love you too mom, and that was about 8:30, and that was the last time I saw my child."

Police found the six year navy veteran lying in the grass outside this Merced apartment complex, not far from his own apartment. His parents believe he was shot intentionally, although they can't imagine why.

Marylene said, "Everybody is just in shock, we don't know, we just don't know ... "

They say Michael was a quiet, studious young man who was about to accept a scholarship to transfer from Merced college to a four year university. He was planning to pursue a career in law.

Earl Riley said, "He said he wanted to be a lawyer so he could come back and help the people that he felt had missed out on a lot."

But now it's Michael's parents who are hoping for justice.

Marylene said, "We want the person or persons that done this to be brought to justice. That's all we want. That's all we want, and I want to ask why."

Merced police say they are pursuing some leads, but they're also asking anyone with information to call the department.

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