National City teen’s family pleads for justice three years after he was gunned down in street – NBC 7 San Diego


Someone shot and killed 18-year-old Brayan Contreras in National City more than three years ago.

Now, the victim’s parents are pleading for the public’s help.

The Contreras family remembers happier times. One in particular was Brayan’s 18th birthday on Aug. 30, 2020.  

Brayan was shot and killed less than two weeks after his birthday. His sister told NBC7  back then, the death was so upsetting she had no words to express her sorrow.

“My brother was always really happy,“ Brayan’s sister Perla Contreras said. “He was really humble. Everybody loved him.”

More than three years later the family says the pain endures.      

“My daughters have struggled a lot,” Brayan’s father, Cipriano Contreras, said. “I have the youngest with a psychologist because it affected her a lot.”

Cipriano and Brayan’s mother, Olga Gallegos, visit a sidewalk shrine memorializing their son almost daily. It was created in the place where Brayan died.

“Not only did they kill my son but also my heart, that of my husband and my daughters went with him,” Gallegos said. “The only thing I ask is: Justice for my son. That it be known what happened and that the person responsible paid.”

In the early hours of Sept. 12, 2020, National City Police said, Brayan was walking alone westbound on 16th Street. He had just left a party with friends that ended badly, according to his parents.

“There was an argument with his girlfriend and he left,” Perla said. “Then, a couple hours later, they found him.”

Brayan was found on the ground six blocks away from where the party was held.   

A lone gunman approached on foot and shot Brayan once in the chest, according to investigators. Witnesses heard the shot and reported seeing the suspect run to the passenger side of a waiting light-colored or silver sedan.

“It’s been three and a half years, and we know nothing,” Gallegos said. “Don’t let it happen again to a family like ours, where their son was taken away from them and they feel pain like the pain we feel.”

The family is keeping Brayan’s memory alive and is seeking closure through the capture of those responsible for his death.    

​The victim’s sister said police were close to solving the case five days after his death but that there has been no arrests or mention of suspects connected to this case.

Crime Stoppers is offering a $1,000 reward for information leading to the capture of Brayan Contreras’s killer. Click here to submit a tip.

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