It was a case that shook the Arlington community.
A beloved, outgoing 19-year-old went missing in December 2019. He was found dead just weeks after his disappearance.
Police say it was murder, but his killer still hasn't been found.
A year later, his family is still searching for closure.
“The past year has been honestly the most difficult year in my life,” said Van Lacey, Evan’s father. "We’ve had up and down moments. We just have been been there for one another."
In this time, the family has been holding onto each other and onto the good memories of Evan.
“He was goofy at times. Very caring. Any time somebody needed to be uplifted, he wasn’t afraid to be that person to do so,” Van Lacey said.
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He recalls a moment his son gave the coat off his back to a homeless man.
“When he came home I asked, ‘Where is your coat?’ He was like, ‘Dad I saw this guy who was on the side of the road and he was freezing, it was cold so I gave him my jacket,’” Van Lacey recalled. "He was charismatic. A leader. On the football field, the basketball court or the classroom, a lot of people looked up to Evan."
Right now, Evan’s friends and family are recirculating flyers on social media and hanging onto hope that someone out there can help bring this case to a close.
Evan was last seen by his family in December 17, 2019 when he left their Arlington home for work that morning in Grand Prairie. After not hearing from him for a day, they immediately reported him missing the day after.
His car was found the following weekend in southeast Fort Worth with blood inside. At the time, his family said he had talked about selling his car and feared he could have met up with a stranger he found online.
For weeks, his family organized search parties until Jan. 4, 2020, when police notified them that his body had been found in a wooded area in south Arlington.
Since then, the Arlington Police Department opened a homicide investigation, but as of January 2021, police said they haven't had a break in the case.
Police said they are continuing to track down tips and leads and have talked to numerous people in the past year.
Evan’s family has this message for anyone out there who might know anything.
"I just want everyone to think if it was you, if it was your relative, if it was your child -- how would you feel?” said Van Lacey. “You would want someone to speak up. So I'm just begging, pleading for someone to speak up. Even if you feel as though it's a minute new detail, nothing is too small. Everything helps. So please speak up for Evan, speak up for my family and speak up for justice."
If anyone has a tip to help solve this case, they can call Detective Coleman with Arlington Police at 817-459-5373. They can also leave anonymous tips by calling Crime Stoppers of Tarrant County at 817-469-8477 (TIPS).
To this day, the family is still offering a $6,000 reward for any information into Evan Lacey's murder.