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After year of heartbreak, family offers cash for answers in 16-year-old Sydney Garcia-Tovar's death

'My mother is determined to catch whoever did this'
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Posted at 11:45 PM, May 20, 2019
and last updated 2019-05-21 01:24:16-04

FAIRFIELD TOWNSHIP, Ohio — Sydney Garcia-Tovar’s friends still come by the family’s home, her brother said Monday night. It’s like she never left — like she wasn't shot on Wildbranch Road July 24, 2018; like she wasn’t pronounced brain dead the following morning; like she worked her summer job at Taco Bell and went on to enlist in the military just as she’d planned.

The only thing missing is her.

And that makes all the difference, Joaquin Garcia said.

“People say it gets easier with time,” he said. “I’ve not seen anything get easier yet. … I miss my sister a lot. My family misses my sister a lot. Really, there’s no way of getting over something so tragic.”

No one has ever been charged in connection to the shooting that claimed 16-year-old Garcia-Tovar’s life. Witnesses were uncooperative, according to her brother.

Frustrated and heartbroken, her family members are now offering their own reward for information leading to an arrest.

"My mother is determined to catch whoever did this," Garcia said. "There's just no stopping her, really."

She posted the offer on Facebook May 16: $1,000 for anyone who submitted a useful tip through Crimestoppers. According to the family, a second, anonymous donor soon offered to contribute $1,000 of their own.

Garcia said he only hopes it’s enough to buy closure for his sister and the people who loved her.

“It’s really tough, not having resolution,” he said. “Whoever did this needs to go behind bars. That way they never rip another life from another family.”

Anyone with information about Garcia-Tovar’s death should call Crimestoppers 513-352-3040.