Family, friends of Orange County child murdered in 1996 call for killer to remain behind bars as parole nears
Family and friends of a child murdered in Orange County more than two decades ago are calling for his killer to remain behind bars as he comes up for parole.
Shannon Napoli remembers that day in 1996 like it was yesterday – when her good friend, Danny Meyer, left his house in Maybrook for a Little League game and never returned.
"It just became one big blur of emotion the following days," says Napoli.
The boy was fatally stabbed along a wooded shortcut between his house and the field by 19-year-old Juan Miguel Peinado - who is now up for parole.
Napoli and her mom say Peinado knew Meyer and moved to the village the year before, posing as a 14-year-old in foster care.
Peinado was found by journalists days after the murder, in the same spot where Meyer was found - with a telephone cord wrapped around his neck.
They reported him to police, who charged the 19-year-old with murder after authorities say he admitted to the killing.
Napoli and her mom remain close to the Meyer family and are fighting with them to keep the boy's killer behind bars.
"Danny was 12. That's it. That's all he got. So he needs to stay where he is," says Napoli
They are asking the public to write the parole board to help ensure Peinado remains in prison.
Village of Maybrook Mayor Denis Leahy says the murder is a tragedy the community will never forget even though many years have passed.