West Valley City • Police responded to two shooting scenes just minutes apart on Tuesday afternoon — one in South Salt Lake and the other in West Valley City — where one person was killed and three were injured.
In West Valley City, one man was killed and two other male victims, an adult and juvenile, were injured, police spokeswoman Roxeanne Vainuku said. At about 5:45 p.m. — about an hour and a half after the shooting was reported — Vainuku wasn’t sure how old the victims were or what prompted the shooting, and police hadn’t taken anyone into custody.
A similar story unfolded in South Salt Lake, where police were searching Tuesday evening for the person who shot a 16-year-old boy near 3100 South and 300 East.
At about 4:05 p.m., South Salt Lake police received reports that someone had been shot. When they arrived at the scene, they found a teenage boy with a gunshot wound on a sidewalk, said South Salt Lake police spokesman Gary Keller.
The boy was taken to the hospital, Keller said, and was expected to survive.
Ben Horsley, spokesman for the Granite School District, said the boy attends a nontraditional school a block west of the shooting scene.
Horsley said the school serves students who are “not able to participate in traditional school programs due to safety or policy violations.”
At about 4:15 p.m., West Valley City police received a report of gunfire near 3500 West Parkway Boulevard (about 2700 South).
The shooting apparently stemmed from “some sort of altercation” between two groups, police said.
Police said the two surviving victims had serious injuries.
Vainuku didn’t release much information about those involved Tuesday evening. She wasn’t sure whether the three lived in the complex or if they knew each other.
A woman who lives in a nearby apartment complex said she was in her home when she heard the shots.
“It was like back and forth, back and forth,” said the woman, who identified herself as May D. “At first, I thought it was firecrackers.”
In recent months, she said, gangs have been tagging homes with graffiti, which prompted her to join her neighborhood watch.
Once May D. decided the noises she heard Tuesday afternoon were gunshots, she went outside to check on the children who are normally arriving home from school about that time. She was also trying to get some information to report to the block commander of her neighborhood watch.
In the street, she found crime-scene tape wrapped around trees, throngs of bystanders (mostly children), TV cameras and police cars with flashing lights
“I’m just hoping no one is killed,” she said. “I’m telling you, there was a lot of gun shots going back and forth.”
Vainuku told reporters that investigators hadn’t determined whether the shooting was gang-related. Police asked anyone with information about the shooting to call West Valley City police at 801-840-4000.
Investigators don’t know whether the two shootings — which occurred about 6 miles apart — are related.