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Missing in America

Friend Charged with Murder of Missing Teen

Police announced Thursday a friend of missing teen Mark Ysasaga is being charged with his murder.

Jose Simental was one of the last people seen with Ysasaga before he disappeared. Ysasaga was 15 when he was last seen on June 14th, 2012 at a Walmart store in Lubbock, Texas with a group of friends.

According to a press release from the Lubbock Police Department, new evidence led detectives to aresidence where Simental had lived at the time of Mark’s disappearance. There, police said they found a suspected crime scene. "The blood evidence was in an amount and location that, when combined with statements and other corroborating evidence, led us to believe that we had indeed located the scene of a homicide. In addition, the DNA from that blood evidence has been positively identified as belonging to Mark Ysasaga," the release read.

Police added that they are not done investigating the case, saying they "know there are more persons that are involved" in the murder. Mark's body has not been found.

The announcement came as a tragic ending for the hundreds who have been searching for Mark. Anna Ysasaga-Cuevas, Mark's mother, refused to give up hope over the past three years, and did not believe the speculation, on the part of some, that Mark was a runaway.

Mark and his mom, Anna.

"We know, especially the mothers. We carried them. We gave birth to them. We know when something is wrong," Anna told NBC affiliate KCBD. "He had his life planned. He knew what he wanted to do when he graduated high school. He never made it to high school."

Anyone who has information is asked to contact the Lubbock Police Department at (806) 741-1000. Callers can remain anonymous.

You can follow more updates on the case at the Facebook page "Justice for Mark Anthony Ysasaga'.