(StraightNews.org) – A 13-year-old allegedly shot and killed a man on a bus in Denver, Colorado, according to police. Reports suggest the teenager and the 60-year-old victim argued on the bus after the man blocked the aisle, resulting in a “verbal exchange.” Police said the teenager, who has not been named, then pulled a gun and shot Richard Sanchez, who died the same day in hospital. A second person was injured but did not require hospitalization.
The District Attorney’s office did not immediately announce what charges the 13-year-old will face, but a police statement said he is held “for Investigation of First-Degree Murder, and the investigation is ongoing.”
Mr. Sanchez’s family said they did not know about his death until after they reported him missing days after the incident. His grandson Joseph Chavez told reporters that the family is heartbroken and described his grandfather as a “really happy dude.” He added that the family’s distress was exacerbated by the fact that the police did not contact them after the shooting, and they had no idea where he was. The result was that “Nobody was there with him during his last breath,” Mr. Chavez said.
The number of teenagers carrying guns in the United States is rising sharply, according to a study conducted in 2022. The research, published in the journal Pediatrics, revealed that between 2015 and 2019, the number of adolescents carrying firearms was 41% higher than in the period between 2002 and 2006.
Figures showed that 4.6% of American teens carried firearms in the later period, compared to 3.3% in the 2002 to 2006 timeframe. The research also revealed that guns had grown in popularity among white, middle-class teenagers but fallen among black and Native American youth. Gun ownership had additionally increased in rural areas, figures indicated.
Naoka Carey co-authored the study and said, “The overall increase was surprising and very concerning.” During the same period examined, gun ownership remained relatively flat throughout the wider population, at around one-third.
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