15-year-old boy dead after being shot by Glendale police while reaching for gun, officers say

Family members showed up at the scene near 63rd Avenue and Bethany Home Road holding flowers late Wednesday night.
Published: Jul. 6, 2022 at 2:07 PM MST|Updated: Jul. 6, 2022 at 7:11 PM MST
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GLENDALE, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) - Police say a 15-year-old boy is dead after he was shot by Glendale police while reaching for a gun in a stolen car on Wednesday afternoon. Jose Santiago with the City of Glendale said officers found a stolen car at an apartment complex near 63rd Avenue and Bethany Home Road just before 2 p.m. Police say there was also a 16-year-old boy in the car as well.

Sgt. Randy Stewart with Glendale police said officers confronted the two teens and the 15-year-old told police he had a gun in the car. Officers told the teen to not reach for the gun. However, Stewart said as one officer went to take the teen into custody, a struggle began. The boy broke away, reached for the gun inside the car and another officer shot him. Stewart said the teen then tried to reach again, and he was shot again by officers.

The 15-year-old was taken to the hospital and later died. No one else was hit and no officers were hurt. The 16-year-old passenger was arrested. Stewart added the gun was found inside a cubby area near the driver’s side. The detective who reportedly shot the teen was not wearing a body camera.

A Glendale Police officer shot and killed a 15-year-old boy on Wednesday while he was reaching for a gun that was in a stolen car, police say.

The boy’s family identified him to Arizona’s Family as Juan Carlos Bojorquez. Family members showed up at the scene holding flowers late Wednesday night. Merlinda Bazan, the boy’s aunt, says the family is heartbroken over the shooting. “Can you imagine what was my reaction? He is a baby, he’s a little boy. He’s 15 years old. What can be my reaction is be hurt. My family is hurt. All our family is hurt from what happened,” said Bazan.

Witnesses of Wednesday's officer-involved shooting in Glendale disputing the police department's account of what happened.

Arizona Family’s News Chopper was over the active scene, where more than a dozen police vehicles had responded. This is the 34th officer-involved shooting in Maricopa County and the 53rd in the state in 2022.