GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. -- It's a case that was highly publicized -- even featured on "America's Most Wanted" -- and now there is new hope for the family of Ryan Pollok seven years after he was shot and killed in Wyoming.
Juan Enrique Reyes and Eric Reyes Santiago are two of West Michigan's Most Wanted. -- and are believed to be responsible for Ryan's murder.
The FBI is offering up a $40,000 reward for the brothers, who are now international fugitives.
It was the early morning hours of September 29, 2007 when gunfire rang out at a Wyoming gas station. Police say the motive is gang-related.
“There was an exchange of gunfire," FBI Special Agent Adam Van Deuren says. "Nobody was injured, but several bullets hit the gas station.”
Van Deuren says after those shots missed the intended target, Juan Enrique Reyes and Eric Reyes Santiago continued their hunt.
“Several minutes later, another shots fired was called out in Grand Rapids,” Van Deuren says.
There -- in a gold Cadillac -- the brothers exchanged words with a group of friends celebrating a birthday. It was a group unassociated with the gangs, their violence, or the intended target of the gunfire.
“Shots were fired into a crowd of four people who were standing next to the road,” Van Deuren says. “One man was shot in the arm. the other person -- Ryan Pollok -- was shot in the chest.”
Ryan’s father Doug received the phone call in the middle of the night that no parent should.
“I got a call from the hospital at two in the morning," he says, "and they wanted to know if my son had a tattoo or earrings or any kind of body information."
While he and daughter Genevieve learned the news, Van Deuren says police identified the men behind the crime.
“Several interviews put the Reyes brothers at the scene along with eye witnesses that identify them as the shooters,” he said.
It turns out that Ryan was only at the party that fatal night by chance. He had rode along with a friend, who wanted to show off his new hot rod.
“He wasn’t even supposed to be there,” Doug says.
As the reality began to sink in for Doug and Genevieve that they had lost their bright, hardworking 22-year-old son and brother, Van Deuren says the Reyes brothers took off.
Juan, Eric, their mother and all their belongings were gone within an hour.
“Officers went to the house that they’re known to live in and all of their belongings were piled into another vehicle that was registered to the family and they were gone,” Van Deuren says.
Thye're believed to have left the state and the country -- leaving a victimized family in pain.
“Why did they do it?" Doug asks. "You know, why did they feel the need to kill somebody innocent?”
Van Deuren believes the brothers went to Guadalajara, Mexico -- where they’re known to have family -- and are thought to have crossed at the international boarder in Texas, possibly changing their names.
“We believe they’re being protected wherever they are in the country of Mexico,” Van Deuren says.
That protection is spreading all the way here to West Michigan, with what Van Deuren says are uncooperative family members.
“We believe the individuals in the city here in Grand Rapids in this area know where these two people are," Van Deuren says, "and as of yet we have not received information about their location.
"People in our neighborhoods who have answers, but refuse to help ease the pain of Ryan's family, or even allow them closure.
“My memory goes from when he would run around in his little red boots,” Doug says.
He and Genevieve are clinging to their memories of Ryan as the days they last saw him grow further and further away.
“The family won’t be able to know any sense of peace or closure until there’s justice," Van Deuren says, "and that’s what we’re after."
The FBI is trying to bring new hope forward for the Pollok family, offering that $40,000 reward for the brothers' arrests -- $20,000 for each brother.
That's a significant increase from the previous reward of $3,000 -- all in the hopes of getting information from the people who know it.
Juan Enrique Reyes, 33, is wanted for the murder of Ryan Pollok. He’s 5’8” and 125 pounds. His brother Eric Reyes Santiago, 30, is wanted for assault with intent to murder. He’s 5’11” and 170 pounds.
Both brothers have ties to the Grand Rapids area and Guadalajara, Mexico.
If you know anything about their whereabouts, you can remain anonymous by calling Silent Observer at 616-774-2345.