Police: 19-year-old woman shot to death, found inside car in Taylorsville apartments

Posted at 7:31 PM, Apr 03, 2017
and last updated 2017-04-03 21:34:10-04

TAYLORSVILLE, Utah -- Police found a woman shot to death inside a car in an apartment parking lot early Monday morning.

Unified Police found 19-year-old Maria Ayala shot to death just after 1 a.m. in the Callaway Apartments on 1141 West 3900 South.

According to Lt. Brian Lohrke of UPD Ayala doesn't live at the apartments and police aren't sure what she was doing there.

Four juveniles who police believe are connected to the crime have been taken in for questioning.

"We're not sure what she was doing or what involvement she had with these other juveniles so we're trying to get some information from them about what her last couple of hours consisted of," Lohrke said.

Police were hoping to get that information from those four juveniles, but they weren't talking.

"After interviewing them they’ve been released back to their guardians and some were taken over to juvenile detention on unrelated pickup orders," Lohrke said.

Lt. Lohrke says they don't have many leads to follow up on but are anxious to help Ayala's parents get some closure.

"Her parents were here this morning and just to see them go through what they had to go through was something that nobody should," Lohrke said.

A resident of the apartments, Chris Reed, just moved in with his young family a few weeks ago. Reed said he didn't realize the neighborhood would be so dangerous.

"Really nerve-wracking to know my kids could be in harms way anytime," Reed said. "Gang activity I did know was a common thing. Drugs, very common. I didn’t think about the shootings."

Police aren't sure if this shooting was gang-related but say the people Ayala was with are gang affiliated.

Anyone who may know anything please contact police at 801-743-7000. Tips can be made anonymously.