Family pleads for answers one year after Christmas murder

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By Tami Hoey By Tami Hoey

PHOENIX -- There is A new plea from the family of a young yo-yo champion who was murdered last year.

Nathan DeWitt, 23, was shot and killed on Christmas night, 2012. It was a murder made even more devastating by the fact that it’s still unsolved.

"Our family needs closure; it’s just been too long," said Tonya DeWitt, Nathan’s stepmother. "It’s like there’s this emptiness in all of us because we don’t know any answers."

Tonya DeWitt is speaking out to raise awareness about the puzzling crime. She recalls Nathan told his family he was going out that night but would return shortly. However, he never made it home.

A neighbor found his SUV crashed down the street on North 28th Street, near Michigan. The good Samaritan discovered Nathan with a gunshot wound to his back.

Tonya DeWitt said the neighbor who tried to save him, recalled Nathan saying, ‘I canot believe they shot me.’

No persons of interest or suspects have been named in the case. It’s not known whether DeWitt knew his killer.  Loved ones say it’s hard to imagine who would have wanted to hurt DeWitt, described as a kind and gentle soul, known for his love and skill with the yo-yo.

It was a talent which earned him respect within the yo-yo community and a championship title.

"He wanted to make something of his life, wanted to help his family," said Tonya DeWitt. "Nate was a good person with lots of love for his family and friends."

His bright future was cut short; his family is now clinging to pictures and memories.

"To me, he’s my angel, he’s our angel," said DeWitt.

However, Tonya DeWitt says she cannot find peace until her family finds justice.

"It would be such a wonderful Christmas gift to our family if we could find out who did this," said DeWitt.

Anyone with information is urged to call Silent Witness (602) 480-Witness or call Phoenix Police (602) 262-7419.