A 17-year-old juvenile has been arrested in connection to the shooting deaths of two 14-year-old teenagers, authorities said Thursday.
Winston-Salem police did not identify the teenager and said that he was charged as a juvenile with accessory after the fact of a felony. The teen is being held in a juvenile facility.
No one has been charged with murder. The teen was taken into custody on Wednesday.
Police also identified the two 14-year-old boys who were killed: Jesus Antonio Candela-Abonza of the 800 block of Utah Drive and Dylan Samuel Lopez of the 800 block of Tara Court.
Officers responded to the shooting at approximately 12:37 a.m. Aug. 1 in a house in the 800 block of Utah Drive. When they arrived, they found Candela-Abonza and Lopez lying in the yard with gunshot wounds.
One of the teenagers was pronounced dead at the scene, police said. The other was taken by ambulance to Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center and died at 6:50 p.m. on Aug. 1.
Police learned from witnesses that Candela-Abonza and Lopez, along with others, were having a small gathering at the home when a vehicle drove through the area. Someone in the car fired at the two victims, police said. Police said witnesses heard multiple shots, and investigators found multiple shell casings at the scene.
Candela-Abonza and Lopez attended schools with the Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools’ district, said Brent Campbell, a spokesman for the district. Campbell declined to identify those schools.
“It saddens us all that the lives and families of Mr. Lopez and Mr. Candela-Abonza have irrevocably been torn apart,” said James Taylor Jr., a member of the Winston-Salem City Council who represents the Southeast Ward.
The shooting happened in Taylor’s ward.
“Our hearts go out to the families and the neighbors that have had to endure the aftermath of these senseless acts of violence,” Taylor said in an email.
“We stand together as parents and neighbors in this community, calling on everyone to be vigilant and proactively involved.”
Mayor Allen Joines also said he was troubled about the boys’ deaths.
“Any homicide is concerning, but it’s very concerning when we start dealing with 14- and 15-year-olds,” Joines said.
The coronavirus pandemic has hampered the city’s efforts in providing young people with recreation centers, youth programs, after-school programs and sports, Joines said.
“We got to get that going again,” Joines said. “Not having those in place unfortunately is giving our young people too much time, and (they) are really getting out there and doing things that are not positive things.”
Anyone with information about the shooting can call Winston-Salem police at 336-773-7700 or Crime Stoppers at 336-727-2800. Crime Stoppers of Winston-Salem/Forsyth County is on Facebook.
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