Local News

Family of slain Bragg soldier seeks answers to his death

Posted December 27, 2017 4:46 p.m. EST

— A month after a Fort Bragg soldier was gunned down in north Raleigh, the family asked Wednesday for anyone with information about his death to come forward.

Spc. Jose Melendez, 31, was shot in the jaw on Nov. 29 in the 2200 block of Raven Road as he was walking to his car, police said. He died at a local hospital.

A woman who called 911 reported seeing a man running into some nearby woods after the shooting.

Mara Ramos said her son had gone to Raleigh to hang out with his friends and to serve as the designated driver – he had to return to Fort Bragg for duty the following morning after being on leave.

"That's the type of person Jose was, coming all the way from Fort Bragg to Raleigh to drive your friends so your friends could have a good time," Ramos said.

She described Melendez as noble, respectful and humorous.

Mara Baker said her brother was very dependable.

"Whenever you needed him, he was there, no questions asked. So, it's mind-boggling to us to not have any answers on why my brother and [my mother's] son was murdered," Baker said.

The family has been passing out fliers near where he was killed and is offering $10,000 of their own money for information leading to an arrest.

So far, they have little to go on.

"It's been very painful, you know, Christmas and now New Year's that I don't have my son," Ramos said. "It's also been kind of frustrating not to know what happened, why."

"We don't want to keep going months or years without knowing," Baker said.

Raleigh police declined to comment on the case Wednesday, calling it an ongoing investigation.

Anyone with information about Melendez's shooting is asked to call Raleigh Crime Stoppers at 919-834-4357.