Shooting outside Phoenix charter school was gang related, teen arrested

Posted: Updated:
Three students were hurt during a shooting outside a charter school Thursday afternoon. By Jennifer Thomas Three students were hurt during a shooting outside a charter school Thursday afternoon. By Jennifer Thomas

PHOENIX -- Three Valley students were hurt during a shooting outside a charter school, reportedly shot by one of their former classmates.

Police say the incident happened Thursday afternoon as the students were leaving the Esperanza Community Collegial Academy near Bell and Cave Creek roads.

Two 19-year-old students were taken to the hospital with non-life-threatening gunshot wounds. A 10-year old boy was grazed on the leg by a shotgun pellet. He did not require medical attention.

According to Officer Luis Samudio of the Phoenix Police Department, the 16-year-old suspect approached the victims and an argument ensued. Police said it was during that argument that the teen, a former student at the school, pulled out a short-barrel shotgun and fired.

Investigators later learned that this was a gang-related incident and that the teen was known to both of the victims, as well as witnesses who were nearby at the time of the argument and subsequent shooting.

Officers arrested the teen at his home. They also located several pieces of evidence in the case.

The 16-year-old has been booked into the Maricopa County Juvenile Correction center on charges of aggravated assault, assisting a criminal street gang and misconduct involving weapons.