17-year-old shot: Lack of cooperation hampers investigation into shooting

May 03, 2000
Santa Paula Police Department
Santa Paula Police investigators are still trying to determine who shot a 17-year-old boy once in the abdomen last week in the area of Steckel Drive but the victim, who neighbors said has been seen with members of a local gang, is not cooperating. The shooting was reported on Friday, April 28 at about 5:22 p.m. when the unidentified victim ran to an apartment complex, located at 328 South Steckel Drive, where he lives with his mother and screamed that he had been shot.The boy collapsed near the alley parking structure, dropping a beer can on the ground beside him.“First he ran home screaming ‘Mom, Mom, I’ve been shot’ and when she asked him who did it, he said ‘I can’t tell you who it is’,” several times, according to a neighbor who asked not be identified. “He also said he couldn’t breath. . .”The victim’s mother told him he needed to tell police who shot him and he refused, repeating that he couldn’t tell anyone who the gunman was.“It was said in a way that indicated he knew who it was but he would not say,” rather than not knowing the identity of his assailant, said SPPD Det. Daryl Koranda.Fears of retaliation or adhering to a code of silence are common in gang-related violent crimes.
The boy was transported to Santa Paula Memorial Hospital where his condition is unknown; his condition cannot be confirmed without his name which police so far have kept to themselves.Although the boy did say he had been shot at nearby Teague Park, that turned out to be untrue after police questioned people that were at the park enjoying the early evening hours and did not see a shooting or hear a shot. A 16-year-old boy was arrested for possession of a firearm but there was no evidence that the gun had been fired or the boy was involved in the shooting.Investigators now believe the victim was shot at another apartment building about 100 yards away from his own home.Although the victim is not known to police as a gang member, he has a distinctive tattoo usually associated with gangs.The investigation is continuing.

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