Details of Disappearance Jose was last seen leaving his family's residence in Stockton, California on August 2, 1981 at approximately 4:00 p.m. He told his parents that he was walking down the street from their home to meet two friends, and would return in about two hours.
He never arrived as scheduled and has not been heard from again. He was initially classified as a runaway and there were reported sightings of him, but he didn't contact his family during the holidays or on his birthday, which is uncharacteristic of his behavior, and is no longer believed to have left of his own accord.
Two suspects, Luis Pete Gagliasso and Manuel Sanchez Jr., were charged with Jose's murder in 1989. They were the two friends Jose planned to meet on the day of his disappearance, and were both in their teens at the time. The men were never brought to trial, however; the case was dropped for lack of evidence.
At the time of his disappearance, Jose was a student at Franklin High School in Stockton. He wrestled, played the cornet and wanted the join the school's jazz band. He has never been located, but foul play is suspected in his case due to the circumstances involved.
- San Joaquin County Sheriff's Department
Updated 6 times since October 12, 2004. Last updated March 22, 2022; three pictures added, clothing/jewelry description and details of disappearance updated.