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Police release photo of homicide victim, request public’s help identifying him

By Hannah Jeffrey and Elisabeth Arriero
    The homicide victim whom police are still trying to identify.
    Christian Giovanni Pena

Charlotte-Mecklenburg police arrested a man in connection with a Friday night homicide but are having trouble identifying the victim and have turned to the public for help.

Christian Giovanni Pena, 16, was arrested Sunday night and charged with accessory after the fact of a felony. Police said they believe he was involved with the homicide.

On Monday afternoon, police released a photo of the victim in an effort to determine his identity, a strategy that the police department rarely uses.

The victim was found in the 6400 block of Old Pineville Road in the Steele Creek Division Friday night around 10:45 p.m., suffering from an apparent gunshot wound.

He is between 16 and 20 years old, Hispanic, has a thin build, a short haircut and no tattoos. He was wearing a black tank top, red basketball shorts and black and white sneakers and riding a black bicycle.

Keith Trietley, a spokesman for the police department, declined to give specifics on police efforts to identify the victim. He also said he didn’t know the last time police had to release a picture of a homicide victim in an attempt to learn the person’s identity.

“We’re still trying,” he said. “They’re working the case.”

Anyone with information about the identity of the victim is encouraged to call the Homicide Unit Detective at 704-432-8477 (TIPS) or Crime Stoppers at 704-334-1600.

Jeffrey: 704-358-6180; Twitter: @hannahjeffrey34
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