Suspect arrested for shooting teen girls in Santa Maria


Santa Maria police officers arrested a 15-year-old boy for allegedly shooting and wounding a pair of teenage girls in the northern Santa Barbara County city last month.

At about 6:20 p.m. on Oct. 9, a caller reported a shooting in the area of Vine and Jewel streets. Officers arrived at the scene and found a vehicle that had been struck by gunfire, according to the Santa Maria Police Department.

Two females, ages 17 and 18, were inside the the vehicle. They were both struck by bullets and suffered serious injuries. Responders transported them to the hospital.

A pair of male suspects had fired the shots, police said. The two suspects fled the area on foot.

Santa Maria detectives took over the case and worked to locate and identify the suspects. Detectives eventually determined one of the suspects is a 15-year-old Santa Maria resident, who is a documented gang member.

On Tuesday morning, investigators located the teen and took him into custody without incident. Authorities booked him in Santa Maria Juvenile Hall on charges of attempted murder. Police are withholding the suspect’s name because of his age.

Detectives are still working to identify the second suspect. They believe he is an adult gang member.

Both of the victims are now recovering from their injuries. Neither of the females is known to have any gang affiliations, police said.

Investigators are asking anyone who has information about the case to contact the Santa Maria Police Department Detective Bureau at (805) 928-3781 ext 1362.