After six months of uncertainty, Felipe Mercado is still in pain, waiting to hear whether remains found in a Fresno County orchard are those belonging to his 16 year old son.
"Yesterday when they told us they couldn't - with the dental records they couldn't prove if it was him or not, they need another DNA test," Felipe said. "It kinda lifted up my hopes. That maybe he's still out there."
Sammy Mercado disappeared back in April. Investigators say he and two others went to grow to steal marijuana, when men protecting the crop opened fire. His friends got away, but Sammy was never seen again. Three men now face charges in connection to his death, after the final suspect surrendered to authorities overnight.
"I just don't know how to put it into words," Felipe said. "I'm glad they caught them, I'm happy and I hope they get what they deserve. But as for me and my kids and everything, we still consider Sammy missing."
And while Felipe Mercado waits for answers. He's also waiting for justice. Friday, he shared photos of his son -- playing chess, basketball -- and fishing just like any other teen.
"I mean, I know what he did was wrong," Felipe said. "But for them to do what they did to him, that's not right. It's not right at all."
Felipe Mercado says he is thankful for the outpouring of prayers and support shown to his family throughout this entire ordeal. He says the past six months have shown him Sammy was loved by a lot of people.