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'Just a matter of time:' Investigators say they will catch killer through DNA

New push to solve cold case murder of beloved store owner

SANFORD, Fla. – It's just a matter of time. 

Sanford police Investigator Bill Erwin said one way or another, he will catch whoever robbed and killed a beloved store owner in 2015.

"We will find out who did this and bring them to justice," Erwin said.

In 2017, Erwin took over the cold case after prior detectives couldn't connect three people recorded on surveillance video inside Kim's Mart to the slaying of Joshua Hur, known to the Historic Goldsboro community of Sanford as "Mr. Kim."

"We tracked down any witnesses or suspects and at this point no suspects were found to have committed the crime," Erwin said. "(We have) no further evidence to collaborate witnesses or statements we received." 

The store was and still is the only grocery store in the neighborhood. 

Hur moved his family to America in 1993, according to police, and opened his first mart in Sanford in 2000. Several years later, he moved it to its present location at 315 S. Poplar Ave. in Sanford.

Customers like Teco Livingston described Hur as kind, giving candy to children and allowing customers to occasionally "slide" if they didn't have enough money to pay for their purchase.

"He always had a smile on his face," Livingston said. "He was a cool dude, him and his family. His old lady, we call him papa and her mama. They were good people. They took care of you and you took care of them."

Investigators said on Dec. 23, 2015, Hur was leaving the store for the night with the cash he'd collected from the day and was heading to church when he was confronted in the parking lot.

 "We could see him on the camera, but nothing in the parking lot was captured on there so we can't tell you what happened in the parking lot," Erwin said.

Erwin believes three people attacked Hur, stole his money and shot him. Hur died in his own parking lot.

"He was catering to the local community and was honored by the community," Erwin said. "He cared for them, they cared for him. And a couple individuals decided to take him away from that."

Erwin said detectives collected trace amounts of DNA from evidence found at the crime scene. He said it's just a matter of time until technology evolves enough to be able to identify the DNA.

"As technology improves, our ability to extract DNA and other evidence from physical evidence improves," Erwin said.

For now, Erwin said tips from the community are necessary to solve Hur's slaying.

Tips to Crimeline at 1-800-423-TIPS (8477) that lead to solving the murder are eligible for a $5,000 cash reward.

"I feel like he's turning and turning until justice has been served," Livingston said. "I feel like he's not at rest and in peace right now."

Kim's Mart has reopened under new ownership.


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