WEST JORDAN, Utah — What police believe was a "targeted" shooting at a party in West Jordan Saturday night left three people dead, and police say they have taken one juvenile suspect into custody.
“It was just a split second and then ‘boom, boom, boom boom,’” said Kevin Kemp. “I knew instantly it was gunshots. I then heard the screaming, the panicking.”
On Monday, West Jordan Police announced the identities of the victims, including two teenagers: Fayzan Alio and Ayash Mohamed, both 18 years old. The third shooting victim was identified as 20-year-old Mohamed Mohamed. All three were from Millcreek.
Police said they responded to a call at 10:45 p.m. that shots had been fired in the area of 3355 West 6920 South.
When officers arrived, they found three people had been shot. Of the three people, one was pronounced dead at the scene. The other two individuals were taken to the hospital where they also died from their wounds.
“All I can think about is their parents,” said Kayla Carson. “Getting the call: ‘Your son got shot.’ It’s devastating.”
The shooting happened at a house party in the area and was likely gang-related, police said. They believe it was a targeted shooting or resulted from a fight. Police said at least two of the victims had known ties to gangs.
“It’s a good holiday to celebrate and have a good time and celebrate the pioneers, but I don’t think this neighborhood is doing that today,” said Nick Hayes. “Gun violence is a horrible, horrible thing. It really is.”
Police said they have received descriptions of "multiple suspects" who were in the area at the time of the shooting. In an update Sunday afternoon, police said they took a juvenile suspect into custody, but they still anticipate additional arrests in the case.
Along with the suspect, police were able to recover "items of evidence including a firearm."
Officials are following up on leads and continuing to investigate.
“We believe that this act of violence was a planned, targeted act and that there is not currently a risk to the general public," said Deputy Chief Richard Bell with the West Jordan Police Department. "We extend our condolences to the families of the deceased and will continue to work to identify and arrest those responsible. We ask that any members of the public who may have information that could help this investigation to contact West Jordan Police Dispatch at 801-840-4000 referencing case WJ22-36475.”
“You know, you’re trying to have a good time. It’s a holiday weekend. You shouldn’t have to experience this twice in two years if you know what I mean,” said Hayes.
Hayes is referring to a double homicide that happened just down the same street in April 2020. Tony and Katherine Butterfield were shot and killed in a home invasion with their three children upstairs.
“I hate to pull up roots and leave,” said Kemp. “I just keep hoping things will get better.”