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I-Team: Family of Theresa Duran hopes for closure, 30 years after unsolved murder

GORHAM (WGME) -- Decades after a Gorham teenager was found shot to death, her killer is still walking free.

With the launch of Maine's first cold case unit, CBS 13 looking at the list of unsolved cases.

"It was a nightmare," said Irene Duran.

It's a nightmare that started in 1984, when her little girl's life was cut short.

Theresa, also known as Terry, was just 14-years-old.

"She had a cat," said Irene. "She loved cats."

Terry also had her first boyfriend.

"I think he was a user myself and he was abusive, he hit her once," said Irene.

On a Friday night that summer, Terry told her parents she was going to stay at a friend's house and would return home on Sunday.

"She was supposed to go visit her friends, but it didn't pan out that way," said Irene. "She was going to see her boyfriend, which she knew we didn't like."

Sunday night came and went with no sign of Terry.

"It was hysterics, it was terrible," Irene said. "I said, 'We've got to report her missing, you know."

Desperate, they turned to the boyfriend for answers.

"We even went up his house because I thought Terry was there, and he come out of the driveway and I said, 'Terry here? And he says, 'No.' And I said, 'Has she been here today?' He said 'No.' I said, 'You're lying.'" said Irene. " I knew he was lying."

For weeks, they had no idea where she was.

"I wouldn't wish that on my worst enemy," Irene said.

More than 30 days later, worry turned to heartbreak when a Gorham police officer showed up at their house.

A young couple and their dog had found a body in the woods off of Plummer Road.

Irene confirmed her daughter's birthmarks, and the community mourned with them.

"We went to court but they didn't have enough hard evidence," she said. "That was a nightmare, too."

Two years after the murder, Terry's boyfriend, then-17, and one of his friends, were arrested.

"She was last seen with both of them,"said Irene.

The friend was acquitted and prosecutors dropped their case against the boyfriend. Irene believes if the boys didn't do it, they know, to this day, who did.

"It is without closure," she said.

It's something her husband never had before he passed away 13 years ago.

"I think it'd be great myself, at least we'd have a peace of mind you know," said Irene. "Probably I won't live long enough to see it, but I hope I do."

State Police declined a request for an interview on Terry's case. When CBS 13 reached out with a list of questions, including whether advances in DNA technology could be beneficial, Lt. Brian McDonough responded: "No new developments and nothing new to report."

If she were still alive today, Terry would be 46-years-old.

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