Lake County

'It was hard to believe’: Family seeks answers after teenager, man found dead in pickup truck

APOPKA, Fla. — Family members of a 13-year-old boy and 26-year-old man who were found dead in the bed of a pick up truck Saturday say they are desperate for answers.

Lake County deputies said Christopher Gutierrez, 13, and Jesus Pantoja, 26, were found in the bed of a pickup truck near County Road 437 early Saturday morning.

Both Pantoja and Gutierrez were from Apopka.

Read: Man, teenager found dead in back of pickup truck in Lake County, deputies say

Their family has been reaching out to the community for help.

Oscar Rodriguez said his brother Pantoja didn’t have any enemies.

“It was hard to believe for us someone would do something like that,” Rodriguez said.

Relatives told Channel 9 that Pantoja was a painter and a hardworking father and that Gutierrez was a talented soccer player.

The family is asking for help with funeral expenses. They have created a GoFundMe page that can be found here.

Investigators have not released very many details in the case. It is still unknown what kind of trauma the victims suffered.

Lake County Sgt. Fred Jones said Monday that he does not recall hearing of such a young victim of homicide during his time at the Lake County Sheriff’s Office.

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“It’s horrific,” he said. “I hope I never see it again."

Investigators said Monday that they believe the victims were possibly targeted, but they did not specify why they believe that.

“It does not appear that this is drug related in any way, shape or form,” Jones said. “It does appear to be an isolated incident.”

Officials said they might release more details about the case Tuesday.

Myrt Price

Myrt Price,

Myrt Price joined the eyewitness news team as a general assignment reporter in October of 2012.