This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2015, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.
Eight years ago Friday was the last day anyone saw Tri Xuan Phan alive.
The West Valley City business owner's murder case has gone cold, and police want the public's help in cracking it and several others. Throughout the winter, the police department plans to spotlight several cold cases in the hopes of finally putting them to rest. A post about Phan's case on the department's Facebook page and Twitter feed this week kicked off the initiative.
"We set our goals for our social media, and one of them was to utilize it to help fight crime and help solve crimes," said Roxeanne Vainuku, spokeswoman for the department. "It's been really successful so far. We've been able to generate tips on some cases that have proved credible… [which has helped] bring criminals to justice."
The night of Jan. 9, 2007, Phan was last seen alive as he began closing up his Vui Vui pool hall at 1839 W. 3500 South. But he never made it home.
The next morning, a friend noticed Phan's car outside the business and tried going in through the front door but it was locked.
The friend then walked around to the back of the pool hall and found an unlocked door. When he opened it, Phan was lying on the floor.
"There were obvious signs of a violent struggle," then-police Capt. Tom McLachlan said at the time.
"Detectives spent years following leads in this case, but the trail has grown cold," the department's Facebook post reads. "… Please share his story and help us bring Phan's killer to justice."
The department plans on posting information about other cases "every week or so" on social media, Vainuku said.
Meanwhile, all of the force's cold cases can be viewed on their recently redesigned website.