Parents seek "Justice for Alex" who was killed an hour after death threats were left on voice mail

11:35 PM, Sep 6, 2011   |    comments
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Charlotte Harbor, Florida -- There were death threats left on his voice mail and then, an hour later, he was dead. Police know who was involved in the incident that led to Alex Teehee's death, but three years after he died, no one has been prosecuted and his family is seeking justice for Alex.

Teehee's sister, Jena Thompson, says, " Alex Teehee was murdered. Alex Teehee deserves justice and justice is not being served."

Teehee's sister  might have a jaundiced view about her brother's death, but she isn't the only one. Former Dade Homicide Detective Mike Osborn says, "It's a felony murder pure and simple."

Osborn has looked at the case and can't believe no one has been prosecuted. He says, "I ran this case by people who are still working, still prosecuting, it's a no-brainer."

But don't tell that to the Charlotte State Attorney's Office, which has yet to prosecute anyone.

Teehee's mother, Carole, says, "We thought there would be an arrest right away and these boys would be held responsible for what they did, but it didn't go that way."

Teehee,  a 20-year-old father of two, was killed July 13, 2008 when, his mother admits, he made the foolish decision to try to get some free ecstasy from some teens he knew were dealing the drug.

She says, "He was stupid to go meet them. He didn't come out of that meeting alive and no one is being held responsible."

Witnesses say there was an altercation and Teehee was struck with an object and fell to the ground. Then, the teens got into a car, crossed the center line, struck Alex at high speed, looped around - going off the road - and then sped away.

His sister, Thompson, says, "The last thing I was able to say to Alex in the hospital, I promised him I would fight for justice and make sure the people responsible would  be held accountable."

Within hours of the accident, Teehee's sister had a good idea who was responsible because the family was given his cell phone, which had messages including profanity-laced death threats an hour before the incident.

Thompson says, "I'm the one who checked the messages and my heart sank and I didn't know what to do. I went and told my parents and told them, 'You've got to hear this.'"

As soon as she played the messages for her parents, Thompson says, "I got my cell phone and I called the Florida Highway Patrol and I said, 'You better get me a trooper and you better get him fast because this was no accident, this was murder.'"

While the state was able to determine that Ralph Looseman was the driver of the car, passenger Michael Sylvester made the death threats and a third teen, Matt Tricarico, was with the others. No murder charges have been filed.

Teehee's father, Tab, says, "It's just ludicrous. We're not having to reach far to have this case wrapped up. It's just crazy. It's not like this is a cold case and we don't know who did it and we have to search for people. We have everybody."

And while the medical examiner labeled Teehee's death a homicide, the Charlotte State Attorney's Office came up with a new theory and said Teehee was actually in the car and had fallen out and it was just a vehicular homicide manslaughter case. However, just as Ralph Looseman was about to go to trial, the state dropped the case.

Meanwhile, experts say the state's theory about Teehee falling out of the car doesn't go with the forensic evidence.

Osborn says it is scientifically impossible for the extreme damage he sustained for him to have fallen from the car.

Three years after her son's death, Carole Teehee says the wounds are still fresh. She says, "It kills me. I can't go on."

Teehee says the family could not understand the reluctance of the state attorney to file homicide charges until they learned a year after the accident that Matt Tricarico was also in the car that hit Alex.

"And then we find out his brother is a deputy for the Charlotte County Sheriff's Office and Charlotte County is prosecuting the case and his mom's a dispatcher and she has been a dispatcher for 15 years."

In the meantime, the Florida Highway Patrol, the Charlotte County Sheriff's Office, and the Charlotte State Attorney's Office maintain they didn't drop the ball and handled the case correctly, but three years after the incident they all say the case is still open and refuse to discuss it on camera. However, Alex Teehee's family says they are convinced those agencies did drop the ball and they believe part of the reason is that one of the men in the car has relatives at the Charlotte Sheriff's Office.

Tab Teehee says, "Of course we want justice for our son, but we are very angered with the system and we want to force them to do what they don't seem to want to do."

And what the State Attorney's Office doesn't want to do is file first degree murder charges and let a jury decide. Until that happens, Teehee's family says there will be no justice for Alex.

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