Salt Lake City police have arrested a young teenage girl in connection with a non-fatal shooting of another girl which occurred on Dec. 4. Authorities believe that the shooting arose out of a gang-related fight. The victim was another 14-year-old girl who suffered gunshot wounds to her lower back and buttocks. She was released from the hospital and is now recovering at her home according to the Salt Lake Tribune. It is unclear whether the victim suffered any permanent injuries in the incident.
The suspect was taken to the Salt Lake Youth Detention Center. She may face charges of aggravated assault and riot according a police spokesperson. It is unclear whether she will ultimately be prosecuted as a child or an adult.
Two other Salt Lake City teens were recently shot in early November. The two teenagers were sitting in a car behind a coffee shop on South Street. Another car in the parking lot opened fire on the teens and drove off. The teens were taken to the hospital with non-life-threatening wounds.
It is unclear what transpired between the people in the two cars or whether the crimes were also gang-related.
Assaults involving guns are particularly serious crimes and it is very easy to face federal and state charges arising out of a gun crime. Individuals who face firearms charges are often rigorously prosecuted and may receive stiffer sentences than people who commit the same offense without the use of a weapon. Juveniles are also more likely to be prosecuted as adults when weapons are involved.
Source: Salt Lake Tribune, “Utah teen girl arrested in Salt Lake City shooting,” Dec. 10, 2012