Sand Canyon shooting accident between teens leads to surgery, arrest 

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The Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff's Station. Courtesy of the city of Santa Clarita.
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Court records obtained by The Signal detailed what investigators believe happened July 16 when two teens rushed to Henry Mayo Newhall Hospital after an accidental shooting in Sand Canyon. 

The investigation started when Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station deputies responded to the 28300 block of Sand Canyon Road in Canyon Country at 1:36 a.m. regarding the negligent discharge of a firearm, according to a sworn statement from a sheriff’s detective. 

Deputies who arrived at the scene of the shooting, which was initially reported as near the In-N-Out in Sand Canyon, learned the victim was already being transported to the hospital.  

The 14-year-old driver who called 911 while taking his friend to the hospital was instructed to pull over, at which point personnel with the L.A. County Fire Department intercepted the car with the driver and victim at Soledad Canyon Road and Commuter Way in Saugus. They then rushed his passenger, a teenage gunshot victim, to Henry Mayo.  

After the gunshot victim got out of surgery, deputies spoke separately with the victim and the driver of the vehicle, who was identified as the “subject” of their investigation in sworn court statements. 

They offered different versions of what happened that night, leading investigators to dig further. 

The court records summed it up as follows: 

The victim originally said he was riding his bicycle near his friend’s house when a dark sedan pulled up alongside him and fired three shots, striking him in the leg. He then ran to his friend’s house and asked for a ride to the hospital. 

On the way, they called 911 and were asked to pull over, the victim said initially, according to court records. 

The driver shared a different tale.  

He said the two were eating at In-N-Out in the driver’s car. When the victim went to throw away his trash, a dark sedan pulled up and fired three shots.  

After confronting the two over the inconsistencies in their stories, detectives ultimately learned the pair had just returned home to the subject’s house after shooting a handgun the driver had in the Angeles National Forest. 

While in the subject’s car, the 14-year-old removed the magazine from the firearm and pulled back the slide, according to court documents. Investigators believe the subject then released the slide with his finger on the trigger, resulting in a discharge that struck the victim. 

The subject disposed of the gun, and the victim then asked his friend to drive him to the hospital, according to the court documents. When the pain became unbearable, he asked him to call 911, and they then met with first responders in Saugus.  

After deputies responded to the hospital, they solicited a “safety statement” from the subject that described where he discarded the handgun, which led deputies to later recover a green Polymer 80 9mm handgun with a gold slide they believe was used in the shooting based on the description given by the subject and video evidence. 

Deputies also recovered footage of the subject that was taken prior to the shooting in which he appears to be firing the gun recovered by deputies out of the window of the car he was driving. 

The 14-year-old driver was ultimately booked at the SCV Sheriff’s Station jail and then transferred to Sylmar Juvenile Hall on suspicion of 246.3(a), the negligent discharge of a firearm. 

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