MIAMI, Florida (CBSMiami) - An execution date has been set for the man who killed a 9-year-old boy from South Florida back in 1995.
Juan Carlos Chavez is set to be executed February 12, 2014 at 6 p.m. for the murder of Jimmy Ryce.
Ryce's father released a statement after the news of the executionsaying, "I just received the news that justice will finally be done inthe murder of my son, Jimmy, on September 11, 1995. I feel acombination of sadness and relief. I hope this sends a message topredators that this behavior will not go unpunished."
On September 11, 1995, Ryce was dropped off by his school bus nearhis home in the Redland. Before Jimmy made it home, Chavez abducted him,ordering him at gunpoint into his truck. Chavez drove Jimmy back tohis trailer, where he ordered Jimmy to remove his clothes and thensexually battered him. Chavez held Jimmy captive for over three andone-half hours before Chavez shot and killed Jimmy when he tried toescape
Two days after the murder, Chavez dismembered Jimmy's body, filledthree planters with Jimmy's remains, and sealed the planters withconcrete.
Chavez was arrested three months later after Jimmy's book bag was seized in his trailer.
"To this day, I remember this case as if it was yesterday. This wasone of the most heinous homicides I've ever handled," recalled Pat Diaz,the lead investigator on the case. Diaz has since retired from theMiami-Dade Police Department, but told CBS4's Maggie Newland the casestill affects him. "I carried this case for 17 years," he said.
Diaz says he'll never forget the moment he and other officers walkedChavez out of the police department. "That was the day all of DadeCounty saw a monster, that we're putting away a bad guy," he said.
Even after the arrest, Diaz stayed in touch with the Ryce family whoworked to keep other children safe, donating bloodhounds to policedepartments, teaching kids about stranger danger, and promotinglegislation to keep predators locked up.
Now with an execution date set, Diaz says the case that haunts so many will truly come to a close.
"I think it buries all the bad memories of someone who did the worst thing you can do is hurt a child," he said.
Check out some ofour mostread stories from 2013:
#shortyellows: Florida quietly shortened yellow lights
Terrorism Warning:Memo says terrorists practicing dry-runs on Florida flights
Kittens shot:Officer shoots kittens in front of children
Courtroom apology:Woman apologizes for flipping off judge
Weird ice: Strange, giant circles appear on frozen pond
Controversial Club:College student organizes "White Student Union"
Warning Shot Wife:Mother gets 20 years for firing warning shots at abusive husband
Science Arrest: Teen girl arrested over science project explosion
Wait, WHAT??Dog shoots man in the leg with a handgun
Popular photo galleries:
Faces of Meth:Devastating before and after photos of meth abusers
Travon Martin Shooting:Trayvon Martin crime scene photos and George Zimmerman injury photos
Hooters Winners:Winners of the 2013 Hooters swimsuit pageant
Rejected:Funny Florida license plates rejected by the DMV ***warning graphic***
Deadly sinkhole:Home collapses, man dies in giant sinkhole
Florida Sex Offenders:Look up sex offenders in any Florida neighborhood here
Restaurant Inspections:Look up inspection reports for any Florida restaurant here